The Role of Compliance in Cybersecurity  | Spector

The Role of Compliance in Cybersecurity 

Role of Compliance in Cyber Security
Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

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The overall technology landscape is evolving at a breakneck pace. While these changes are meant to improve the quality of life, the unfortunate flip side is an increase in cyber threats. This is why global cybersecurity spending increased from nearly $40 billion in 2019 to $54 billion in 2021. Unfortunately, due to a lack of spending on personnel or technology, SMBs are most frequently targeted by threat actors.

Recommended Read: How a ‘Compliance First’ Mindset Limits Liabilities for SMEs 

Many businesses fall victim to cybercrime because compliance and security are not a high priority for them. For your organisation to run smoothly, both compliance and security are critical. While compliance ensures that your organisation stays within the bounds of industry or government laws/regulations, security ensures that your organisation’s integrity and vital data are safeguarded. 

Know These Benefits 

The following are the reasons why adhering to industry compliance regulations is so important from a cybersecurity perspective:

Encourages trust 

Customers usually put their trust in an organisation while sharing their personal information, but unfortunately, personally identifiable information (PII) gets exposed in around 80% of security breaches. Following regulatory standards demonstrates that the organisation cares about its customers and wants to protect sensitive data. 

Improves security posture 

Regulatory compliance helps improve an organisation’s overall security posture by establishing a consistent baseline of minimum security requirements. 

Reduces loss 

Data breaches are less likely to take place when security is improved. This lowers the cost of data loss, which can skyrocket when you factor in lost revenue, restoration costs, legal penalties and compensation. 

Increases control 

Improved security leads to increased control over the IT infrastructure. This can help prevent data loss/corruption and reduce the amount of time spent fighting cyberattacks. 

Industries and Regulations 

While each industry has its own set of cybersecurity issues, some overlap. Phishing, for example, is a threat that almost all industries face. To combat these challenges, each sector has its own set of compliance and regulatory standards with specific provisions for security and privacy.  

Some regulations apply to multiple industries as well. Note that compliance regulations change from one country to the next and sometimes even within the same country. Let’s take a look at some of the industries and their associated rules:


In the healthcare industry, shared data is highly sensitive. Cybercriminals who steal protected health information (PHI) usually fetch a high price for it on the dark web. Therefore, there are regulations in place, like the ones mentioned below, to ensure the secure handling of data: 

  • The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) prohibits the disclosure of PHI without the patient’s consent. 
  • In the European Union, generic data protection laws, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA), regulate the handling of health-related data. 

Is your business ready for HIPAA and PCI-DSS? Find out in this article.  


Finance is often the most regulated sector because a big chunk of data revolves around payments and financial transfers. Some of the most popular regulations in this industry are listed below. 

  • The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) is an information security standard aimed at reducing payment card fraud for organisations that deal with branded payment cards. The scope of this regulation goes beyond the financial industry. 
  • In Japan, the Act on the Protection of Personal Information (APPI) regulates the commercial usage of personal data. 
  • The EU’s Payment Services Directive (PSD2) governs data transfer during end-to-end payments.  


There are strict regulations in the defence sector since a breach could result in the disclosure of national secrets. 

  • The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) governs the Defense Industrial Base (DIB) in the United States. 
  • In Australia, the Defense Industry Security Program (DISP) assists organisations in understanding and meeting their security duties when working on defence projects, contracts and tenders. 

Data Protection Standards – ISO27001 

Having compliance standards or frameworks to direct your efforts tends to be an effective strategy. One of the most respected and requested standards globally is ISO27001, and for excellent reasons. If your business is following guidelines required by the standard and the right policies, tools and procedures are in place; you’re bound to be in a much better place in terms of security. 

Read: ISO27001 vs NIST CSF – Why Choose One? 

As is the case with the regulations mentioned above, a business that seeks to adhere to compliance best practices will generally improve its security as a requirement. Hence, compliance and security walk side by side and compose the GRC (Governance, Risk & Compliance) discipline.

Reaching your Compliance Goals 

Upgrading your business’s compliance and security posture is no more an option but rather a necessary undertaking. And you can save a tremendous amount of time and effort by finding the right partner to guide you along the way.

No goal is too far. Our expertise will break down what seems to be a daunting task into achievable steps, and you’ll soon be in a much better place. Contact us to schedule a Gap Analysis or read our brochure to learn all advantages of our Compliance and Cyber Security Programme. 



  1. Statista 
  2. IBM CDBR 2020 


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