skyline with padlock overlay

A CISO’s Guide to Cybersecurity Budgeting 

A CISO’s Guide to Cybersecurity Budgeting 

How to Efficiently Allocate Cybersecurity Funds


The economy has become more reliant on digital assets than ever before. Cybercrime is at its highest. The cost and consequences of data breaches are on the rise. 

This means we have to give more consideration to cybersecurity when developing security budgets for the next fiscal year. Having cybersecurity in your budget is essential for several reasons, given the increasing complexity and severity of cyber threats: 

  • Proactive Defense – Detect and stop threats before they cause significant damage with vulnerability assessments, firewalls, etc.  
  • Risk Managment – Minimize potential losses by having a plan and resources in place prior to a breach 
  • Compliance – Many industries have regulations requiring that a certain level of cybersecurity measures must be utilized for organizations. Failure to comply may result in legal and financial repercussions. 

Typically, budgeting discussions begin a few months prior to a new fiscal year, the most common being January 1st-December 31st.  So, we’re going to take a deep dive into security budgeting and provide some insight on incorporating cybersecurity into your discussions. Being proactive with cybersecurity pays off greatly in comparison to reactive measures. Save your reputation, finances, and vital data by applying the information shared in this quick read.  

Factors to Consider When Making Cybersecurity Budget Decisions 

Assessment of current security posture 

  • How recently did you perform a penetration test, vulnerability scan, compliance audit, or other form of assessment? 
  • How secure is your network? 
  • Have you performed regular employee cybersecurity training? 

Industry regulations and compliance requirements

  • What do your industry regulations require of your organization? 
  • How do you measure and report cybersecurity breaches? 
  • What are the consequences for breaking compliance? 

Organizational size and complexity 

  • What kind/How many confidential records is your company responsible for? 
  • Are there repercussions if the data is breached? 

Previous security incidents and vulnerabilities

  • Have you had any recent security incidents? 
  • How did (or how could) a cybersecurity breach affect your client/stakeholder relationships? 
  • Do you have information that someone else wants? 

Key Components of a Cybersecurity Budget  

Personnel and Training 

  • Hiring skilled cybersecurity professionals. 
  • Training and certifications for the team. 
  • Educating employees about security best practices. 
  • Conducting simulated phishing exercises. 

Technology and Tools 

  • Investment in security software, firewalls, antivirus programs, etc. 
  • Advanced threat detection and prevention solutions. 


  • Secure network architecture. 
  • Encryption and data protection measures. 

Incident Response and Recovery 

  • Developing a robust incident response plan. 
  • Allocating resources for post-attack recovery. 

External Services  

  • Managed security services. (day-to-day security providers) 
  • Third-party audits and penetration testing. (ethical hackers) 

The World Economic Forum found that 95% of cybersecurity incidents occur because of a human error. Those human errors can occur in any of the key components listed above, at any time throughout the year. All hope is not lost though! Use the steps below as a framework for mitigating risk with a thorough security budget.  

If we had to break it down into 3 steps…  

1. Risk Assessment 

  • Identify risks and their potential impact based on  
  • Determine risk tolerance levels based on current cybersecurity practices 

2.  Prioritization 

  • Allocate resources based on the severity of risks 
  • Balance prevention, detection, and response 

3. Long-Term Planning 

  • Incorporate scalability for future growth 
  • Consider evolving technologies and threats 

Reevaluate and Monitor as the Year Progresses 

  • Perform regular evaluation of security measures that looks at technology infrustructure changes, business growth, new threats/vulnerabilities, regulatory changes.  
  • Adjust the budget based on the changes discovered, and make notes to include inthe next budgeting discussion.  

Security Budgeting in Action 

Organizations that effectively manage security budget reap major benefits such as  

  • Employee awareness of cybersecurity risks increased, leading to fewer security incidents caused by human error 
  • Incident response time was minimized, minimizing the impact of potential breaches 
  • Improved security posture enhances client trust and facilitated new business opportunities. 

When organizations take a proactive approach to cybersecurity it can lead to a significant reduction in harmful cyberattacks and data breaches.  

Want to learn more about squeezing more from your cybersecurity budget? Schedule a consultation to discuss the needs of your organization, or send over your questions in an email to

Zelvin Security

IT Providers vs. Ethical Hackers  

In the diverse landscape of cybersecurity, two distinct yet collaborative providers play pivotal roles in defending your digital space: IT Providers and Ethical Hackers.   While their ultimate goal is to enhance the security posture of organizations, they approach the task…


Investing Wisely in 2024: Cybersecurity 

More digital tools = more cyber risks.  Does your organization use technology? Do you store client, employee, and confidential data?  Few can say no, as business are efficiently scaled using digital tools to automate operations, store data, and communicate internally…


7 Cybersecurity Strategies for 2024

The 7 important cybersecurity strategies you can implement TODAY to help protect your network against malicious hackers.  There were 28,775 known vulnerabilities in 2023, which is the highest ever recorded by National Institute of Standards and Technology in the National…


Can you proactively secure your network with vulnerability scanners? 

39 Cybersecurity experts, including Zelvin Security’s President, Jeff Atkinson, took to LinkedIn to address the effectiveness of vulnerability scanners to proactively protect your network.   What is a vulnerability scanner?  These are software applications that scan a network for known vulnerabilities….


School District Data = Hacker Paychecks

Students looking at computers

K-12 Education Cybersecurity is increasingly more important for school district officials. Security is worth the investment.


What ETEC Members Need To Know About Cybersecurity 

As a proud supporter of the East Tennessee Economic Council (ETEC) community, Zelvin Security presents the following information as a guide to improve the cybersecurity programs of ETEC member organizations. One of the challenges all business leaders face is finding…


Zelvin Security at the Core

Describing the core values of Zelvin Security, a cybersecurity consulting firm

These are the core values that guide the daily work of Zelvin Security, a cybersecurity consulting firm.


The Cost of Ignoring Cyber Risks

Because securing digital assets is as important as locking an office door. Cybersecurity isn’t just a “nice-to-have" - It’s a must to keep your financial health and reputation intact.


How Much Do You Know About Third-Party Vendor Security?

The importance of third party vendor security

Strengthen the cybersecurity of third-party vendors to enhance your organizations security posture. Use the resources in this article as a starting point to implement proactive measures.


A CISO’s Guide to Cybersecurity Budgeting 

skyline with padlock overlay

How to Efficiently Allocate Cybersecurity Funds   The economy has become more reliant on digital assets than ever before. Cybercrime is at its highest. The cost and consequences of data breaches are on the rise.  This means we have to…