When people hear the word “security,” they almost certainly think about breaches, firewalls or governance policies that strictly allow or deny access to business information. Protection and prevention is, after all, its primary role.

But modern security tools can do a lot more than protect. Used strategically, they can also provide valuable insight – a deep visibility into a company’s IT infrastructure, a better understanding of how corporate computing resources are used, even insight to power targeted advertising.

Often overlooked, here are five business-enabling benefits that advanced security solutions can provide:

  1. Investment prioritization: Gaining a better understanding of who and how many people use applications within the data center provides the insight required to support effective prioritization and more targeted investments.
  2. Geo-location data: Learning where customers reside can be used to optimize advertising. Equally, questioning unusual communication patterns can reduce risk, putting the organization on the front foot by quickly determining whether behavior is marketing-driven or malicious.
  3. Troubleshooting: Security tools can be used to give IT teams a baseline for “normal” IT system states and performance, which helps isolate faults and get things back online faster.
  4. IT capacity planning: Visibility gives IT a handle on what resources are being used. No one wants to overbuy capacity that sits unused or to be caught short by under buying.
  5. Social media measurement: Find out how sales and marketing interacts with customers and measure engagement by traffic volume. You can also help with promotional targeting by determining which social media outlets are most relevant to customers.

If you have been diligent about implementing security technology and procedures, don’t forget to take advantage of these benefits from your investments to save money and support business objectives.

If you haven’t been diligent, you may have already been hacked and just don’t know it yet. Good luck with that.