Managing and mitigating cyber risk demands a balance of technology, strategy and an internal drive. When innovative solutions and critical thinking meet, a business can begin to hone and refine a culture that proactively fights cyber threats. But just like a chair missing a leg, without the perfect balance of all of these vital elements, the chances for significant data compromise are nearly guaranteed.

Understanding the need to segment and compartmentalize various systems and, in turn, optimize data security has led to a new movement in IT security. Focused on creating a highly complex system of redundancies and a multilayered authentication-based process to keep secure data safe, the defense-in-depth (DiD) methodology just might be the missing tool to enhancing your data security.

Defining The Term

Put simply, the defense-in-depth approach is the “coordinated use of multiple security countermeasures to protect the integrity of the information assets in an enterprise.” Whereas in fashion, less is more, in the defense-in-depth ethos, more is more. From creating multiple backups and integrated authentication-based processes to ensuring enough redundancies to make 1960’s era NASA jealous, the name of the game is establishing a defensive core to protect your assets.

Once your baseline security systems have been put into place, DiD provides the structural and system-based support to ensure that if one bolt fails, another will hold its weight. Put another way, the DiD methodology is much like preparing for going out in an intense winter storm. It relies upon integrating established layers of data protection to ensure that regardless of the potential shortcomings of one system, the entirety of the process remains safe and secure.

DiD includes the layered integration of a wide variety of processes, which can involve everything from physical security measures (like padlocks) and the routers used to biometrics and authentication protocols. In essence, DiD brings together numerous physical and technical security elements concurrently to amplify data defense while minimizing potential security gaps present in its components.

Who Stands To Gain From DiD?

DiD provides a tangible benefit for all users as a systematic approach to implementing effective cybersecurity protocols. In practice, DiD is ideally geared toward forward-thinking IT professionals, systems admins and technically focused CTOs and CIOs.

As an evolution of many legacy cyber products such as antivirus protection, intrusion detection, firewalls and antispyware systems, DiD blends these physical systems with employee cyber training and a top-down approach to managing cyber risk. Consequently, in this strategic approach to mitigating cyber risk, innovative technologies are blended with the openmindedness to think differently about potential cyber risks. This builds employee buy-in toward fighting cyber threats while breaking down the technical barrier to enable all staff to do their part in managing the cyber risk equation.

Key Takeaways

By linking legacy cyber risk management solutions such as antivirus software or multifactor authentication with innovative thinking and a redundancy-based approach to mitigating potential cyber risk, DiD provides the structure to optimize data security while enhancing existing security deployments.

As the tangible outgrowth of technical need and ideological understanding of risk management, DiD is a blend of new thinking and established solutions all geared at providing multilayered protection from illicit cyber players and crippling cyberattacks.

This article originally appeared in Forbes