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Grow your revenue by improving your cyber security

Renee Jameson
Renee Jameson

3m read

The team at SafeStack specialise in high-quality, educational content to help software and SaaS companies stay safe when it comes to cyber security. With technology evolving at pace, you’ll want to ensure your teams know how to mitigate the risk of any attacks on your business.

We asked Laura Bell Main, SafeStack’s Founder & CEO, to share her insights on how improving your cyber security can help you succeed in an ever-evolving environment.

Here are some helpful tips for you and your teams on how to stay safe.


Building a successful software or SaaS company in New Zealand or Australia is no small feat. It takes dedication, innovation, and a relentless drive to push through challenges, especially in this market.

As you strive to create amazing products and expand your customer base, you might have noticed an increasing concern among your customers about cyber security.

It's a valid concern, and addressing it can enhance your company's security and make the sales process smoother. The best part? You can get started without breaking the bank or slowing down your progress. In this blog post, we'll provide three practical steps to begin your journey into cybersecurity and application security without overwhelming your resources.

Firstly, let’s remind ourselves…

Why do our customers care so much about cyber security?

Buying a software solution involves risk. Your customers trust your software, systems, and teams with their data and handling a part of their day-to-day operations. In some cases, that data can be very sensitive, and a data breach would be damaging to them, whether it be reputationally or legally in some cases. The questions they ask you about cyber security in the buying process are their way of determining whether the benefit of the tool outweighs the risk you and your company pose to them and their data/customers. It’s a sophisticated version of your decision when your friend asks to borrow your car. Sometimes it's a simple “heck yes!” and sometimes, if your friend has a track record of driving disasters, you may be more reluctant or put additional rules in place.

So if we all accept our customers aren’t trying to punish us, just understand if we are helping or harming them, we can focus on proactive steps to improve our cyber security practices and make those sales processes smoother.

1. Recruit your whole team and build a shared understanding of why this matters.

The first step in strengthening your company's cybersecurity posture is to recruit everyone in your organisation and give them the knowledge they need to understand the risks and take steps to reduce them. They don’t need a heavy academic education, just a shared understanding of why it matters to you and your company and what they can do to help. Here's how to do it:

Provide basic cyber security awareness training

Schedule regular cybersecurity training sessions for your team. These can be brief and focus on specific topics such as password management, phishing awareness, and best practices for data protection. Encourage open discussions and questions to foster a collaborative learning environment. (Spoilers, You can get free essential security awareness and secure development training for your whole team at SafeStack - no tricks - visit

Create security policies

Don’t freak out; think minimum viable policy (and you can even ask ChatGPT to help you write it. Developing clear and concise security policies and procedures helps set expectations for your team and can be used to communicate your practices with customers. Include guidelines for password management, data handling, and reporting security incidents.

Reward vigilance

Implement a reward system to recognise and encourage employees who identify and report potential security threats or vulnerabilities. This not only incentivizes good cyber security practices but also empowers your team to proactively protect your company.

2. Implement the boring (but brilliant) basics

As an early-stage company, it's essential to secure your applications without overwhelming your resources. Here are some practical steps to start:

Regular software updates:

Ensure that your software and applications are updated with the latest security patches. Making sure you let your systems update (and restart afterward) and updating the libraries and frameworks you use in your software are simple and practical steps to reduce security risks. Leaving old, vulnerable software in your company is like leaving the front door open.

Access control:

Sort out your passwords. No, really. No more shared accounts, no more terrible reused passwords. Get a password manager for your team and roll it out. Actively work to remove access to your applications so that only those people with genuine needs have access. This reduces your cyber security risk and saves you money. Great success!

Backup and recovery:

Bad things happen. Rather than debate whether it will or will not happen to your company, just take some basic steps to ensure you can recover quickly. For example, build an emergency contact list that you store in a few places and back up your business-critical data frequently. That way, if something goes wrong, you can respond quickly.

3. Be security (and budget) savvy when you get extra help.

While cyber security is crucial, we understand that early-stage companies often operate on tight budgets. Fortunately, there are affordable cyber security solutions tailored to your needs:

Cloud security services

Many cloud providers offer built-in security services that are cost-effective and scalable. Take advantage of these services to protect your cloud-based applications and data. If you are using AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud - talk to them. They love to help with this stuff (often including free consulting services they give away to startups).

Open-source tools

Explore open-source cyber security tools to help you assess and enhance your security posture. From intrusion detection systems to log analysis tools, there's a wide range of free and open-source resources available.

Government support

In both New Zealand and Australia, there are government programs and initiatives aimed at supporting cyber security in small and medium-sized enterprises. Explore these opportunities for financial assistance or guidance. Start by checking out CERT NZ or AusCert.

Embarking on a journey to secure your company doesn't have to be a daunting task. By prioritising a shared understanding of security on your team, implementing basic security measures, and seeking affordable solutions where you need extra help, you can significantly improve your company's security posture without sacrificing your budget or slowing down your progress. You may find it helps you speed up sales and grow revenue.

Still need a little help?

Check out SafeStack’s free application security program, delivering guidance and templates to secure your software in just 1 hour per sprint.

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