Moving Beyond Annual Inspections: The Importance of Monthly Cybersecurity Checks

Moving Beyond Annual Inspections: The Importance of Monthly Cybersecurity Checks

Guest writer Kevin Landers tackles a huge source of anxiety for many of us in the digital age, our online security. Read on for, “Moving Beyond Annual Inspections: The Importance of Monthly Cybersecurity Checks.”

In today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, cybersecurity has become a critical concern for businesses of all sizes. Regulations and guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and even cyber liability insurance providers mandate an annual security check. But if you look at the facts about how criminals operate, it is clear that this frequency is insufficient. 

Did you know that the average time a cyber attacker resides in a system before detection is 290 days? This means that a breach could go unnoticed for nearly ten months if you conduct security checks only once a year. By the time the annual inspection rolls around, the damage could already be extensive, potentially costing the business in terms of data loss, financial penalties, and reputational harm.

Businesses should consider monthly cybersecurity inspections to ensure their systems remain secure and resilient against potential threats.

The Regulatory Baseline: Annual Checks.

The FTC and most cyber liability insurance providers require organizations to perform security checks at least once a year. This requirement is aimed at ensuring that companies maintain a basic level of cybersecurity hygiene. The process typically involves a high-level meeting with executive leadership and stakeholders, followed by a series of scans on a handful of computers. These scans generate reports highlighting any vulnerabilities or breaches, with a follow-up meeting to discuss the findings and necessary actions.

Being Basic is not Good Enough.

While annual checks are a regulatory requirement, more is needed for effective cybersecurity management. A yearly inspection can leave significant gaps in the fast-paced world of cyber threats. Cybersecurity is not a “set it and forget it” task; it requires continuous monitoring and regular updates.

In our experience conducting these assessments over the past five years, we have never encountered a dealership without vulnerabilities. Whether it is outdated software, weak passwords, or other security lapses, there is always something to address. Relying on annual checks means these issues could remain undetected for months, giving cybercriminals ample time to exploit them.

Benefits of Monthly Security Checks.

  1. Proactive Threat Detection: Monthly checks enable businesses to detect and mitigate threats quickly. Regular scans and reports ensure that vulnerabilities are identified and addressed before they can be exploited.
  2. Compliance and Peace of Mind: Although the FTC and insurance providers recommend annual checks, exceeding these requirements by conducting monthly inspections demonstrates a proactive approach to cybersecurity. This can provide stakeholders, customers, and regulatory bodies peace of mind.
  3. Continuous Improvement: Cybersecurity is a constantly evolving field. Monthly checks allow businesses to avoid new threats and adapt their security measures accordingly. This continuous improvement cycle helps maintain a robust defence against cyber-attacks.
  4. Building a Security Culture: Regular interactions between IT teams and leadership foster a culture of security within the organization. This ongoing dialogue helps demystify cybersecurity, making it a shared responsibility rather than a specialized isolated task.
  5. Overcoming the Intimidation Factor: Many business leaders find cybersecurity intimidating due to its technical complexity. However, it is crucial to break down these barriers and communicate in plain language. Monthly security checks offer an opportunity to educate stakeholders about the importance of cybersecurity and the specific actions being taken to protect the organization. By translating technical jargon into understandable terms, we can help leaders make informed decisions about their security posture.


In conclusion, while annual cybersecurity checks meet the minimum regulatory requirements, they are insufficient in today’s threat landscape. Monthly inspections provide a more proactive and effective approach to managing cyber risks. By committing to regular security assessments, businesses can protect their data, maintain customer trust, and ensure long-term success. Do not wait for a breach to highlight the gaps in your security—take action now and make monthly cybersecurity checks a core part of your business strategy.

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