The need for a unified strategy for digital trust

Investing in digital trust is increasingly vital for IT organisations worldwide, especially in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. To prioritise digital trust, a unified approach is essential, as it can help maintain reliable uptime, reduce the risk of data compromises, and improve consumer trust in an organisation.

The growing threat landscape managed by IT professionals is demonstrated in recent incidents such as AirAsia’s massive ransomware attack, Shangri-La’s data breach compromising consumer data from Singapore and Hong Kong, and the recent Octopus hack in Australia. A study found that global cyberattacks increased by 38% in 2022, with APAC experiencing the second-highest number of weekly attacks per organisation.

As the future of quantum computing draws closer, encrypted data is at risk of disruption in the coming years. Furthermore, with expanded connectivity driven by remote work, IoT, and agile software development, digital trust must be a strategic imperative across the enterprise. A centralised approach that provides entire-network visibility of digital trust architectures will be essential for managing digital trust effectively.

Secondly, aside from business leaders themselves, consumers place a higher priority on digital trust when deciding to use services from a company. Greater trust and confidence in an organisation can lead to more business, while the opposite can result in consumers choosing a different company with a better digital trust security offering. In fact, according to DigiCert’s 2022 State of Digital Trust survey, 42% of consumers in APAC have stopped doing business with a company after losing confidence in its digital trust competency. With expanded connectivity driven by remote work, IoT, and agile software development, enterprises, device manufacturers, and all organisations need to consider digital trust a strategic imperative.

Thirdly, outages caused by certificate expirations and failures can severely disrupt business processes and affect consumer trust in an organisation. For example, the music streaming application Spotify had its services disrupted in 2020 due to a TLS certificate expiration, affecting millions of users worldwide. In another instance, Equifax, a credit bureau, suffered a massive data breach in which attackers stole the personally identifiable information of more than 150 million Americans. The data breach cost Equifax $575 million in fines alone, but more importantly, the damage to the organisation’s reputation is incalculable.

Thus, organisations need a unified approach to digital trust that includes an effective and centralised certificate lifecycle management solution that gives them visibility across their network. 

Security as a unified digital trust strategy

Organisations are facing increasing pressure to manage digital trust at scale, across multiple functions in IT. Therefore, companies should explore ways to reduce silos and pursue a unified digital trust strategy. Organisations can benefit from a comprehensive way to govern the full digital trust stack, backed by the support and services that contribute to digital trust resiliency. 

The most important step forward in deploying a unified digital trust strategy is establishing and maintaining clear visibility across all certificates in an organisation’s environment, to carry out fundamental certificate lifecycle management tasks including:

  • Discovering potential vulnerabilities, such as the use of weak algorithms.
  • Identifying expiring certificates and replacing them.
  • Ensuring compliance with regulatory guidelines and corporate policy.

To achieve centralised and effective digital trust management, companies need a solution that can “see” their certificates no matter who owns them, where they’re located, how they’re used and how long their lifespan is. Pairing certificate discovery with automation is instrumental in keeping business systems connected and running securely and efficiently. Automation also reduces the risk of business disruption and securing identity and access across the organisation.

Management and notifications are also key to knowing which actions need to be taken to prevent certificate expiration, warning of policy violations and alerting security about needed remediation actions. Organisations can benefit from using a trust management solution that features deep integrations that deliver governance across certificate authorities and interoperability with all business systems. These integrations can automate last-mile installations to drive efficiencies.

Digital trust as tomorrow’s future and today’s solution

Adopting a unified digital trust strategy can benefit organisations both at the top and bottom line. On the top line, digital trust can accelerate customer acquisition, improve employee productivity, and drive digital innovation. On the bottom line, it can reduce the risk of outages of mission-critical applications, the attack surface area for breaches, and customer churn due to loss of trust.

In fact, companies that have already adopted digital trust have found it to be an essential part of their organisational success. Leaders in the APAC region who have reported having digital trust strategies are also more than twice as likely to say they are good at preventing phishing or other email-based attacks.

Organisations that treat digital trust as a strategic imperative and centralise their approach to trust management build user trust and add value to the top and bottom lines.