June 28, 2013
IT professionals are brought on at nonprofit organizations to help decision-makers learn how to take advantage of technological innovations, as well as keep critical information safe from cybercriminals. However, neglecting to actively take part in risk management could be a major mistake for nonprofit leaders. According to new research from security software provider Tripwire and the Ponemon Institute, only 29 percent of IT professionals stated their employer has a strategy for preventing potential risks that is utilized throughout the organization.
"There's a big gap between risk-based security program commitment and how organizations are actually operating," said Elizabeth Ireland, vice president of product marketing for Tripwire.
Risk management is of the utmost importance
Cybersecurity is increasingly important to today's nonprofits as the number of threats continues to grow. Decision-makers understand the need for preventative measures, as 88 percent and 78 percent of respondents stated protecting intellectual property and reducing non-compliance among employees, respectively, are key objectives of their risk-based security initiatives.
Nonprofits that expose their security infrastructure to data breaches can be drained of their funds and not be able to contribute to their intended cause. This is why top leaders have to be involved in how the organization deals with risk.
Dr. Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of the Ponemon Institute, said IT professional handle risk-based security management, but if organizations truly want to limit their potential for a data breach and have a secure cloud environment for their team, leaders need to take a proactive role in limiting potential threats.
Ponemon added top decision-makers really have no choice but to take a bigger stance in decreasing risks at their organizations, or else they can run into real trouble.
Nonprofits have to look out for certain risks
While nonprofits operate similarly to many businesses, the risks they may potentially encounter are somewhat different. An article for The NonProfit Times pointed out some of the main problems organizations should be sure to defend against:
In addition to their money-saving purpose on behalf of nonprofit organizations like AHS, First Nonprofit’s Nonprofit Unemployment Fund streamlines the information we need to efficiently manage unemployment claims. Our relationship with NU Fund gave us access to such things as advice on planning for what’s ahead and how to analyze cost scenarios when unexpected events occurred. Both experiences were very helpful.
The Ensight Skills Center has enjoyed working with First Nonprofit for several years. We are enrolled in their Unemployment Savings Program and although we have not required a lot of intervention, there have been a few times. I know others have dealt with the same problem of unemployment fraud over the last year and in our case, a call to First Nonprofit (they actually answer their phones) cleared up the issue. They also sent us a letter to send to all our employees telling them what they needed to do to prevent this in the future and protect themselves. What a relief! Over the years if I have questions or concerns, they are happy to listen, advise and help if they can. Another BIG advantage of using First Nonprofit is that all the money that is paid into the Unemployment Savings Program lives on my balance sheet as an asset. The money continues to be Ensight’s not the governments. First Nonprofit has certainly given me peace of mind.
Visually Impaired Preschool Services has been a client of First Non-Profit since it was first offered as a benefit of VisionServe Alliance. We completed a thorough evaluation of cash savings to our agency before taking advantage of this wonderful benefit and it has been a very wise decision. Our experience with the processes from accounting to claims have been professional, expeditious and easy.
NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.
It has been our sincere pleasure to maintain a strong, vibrant business partnership with First Nonprofit. We greatly admire their strong industry knowledge, technical expertise, constant professionalism, knowledgeable and dedicated staff. They are always extremely responsive, personable and provide us with the necessary guidance and recommendations on a numerous variety of employment scenarios. We
Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.
Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.