Understanding the Complete Cybersecurity Cycle

Understanding the Complete Cybersecurity Cycle

In our last blog piece, we explored the top 5 skills crucial to success in cybersecurity. Three of these critical skills – Threat Intelligence, Vulnerability Assessment, and Incident Response – can sometimes seem confusingly similar.

Let’s break down their distinct roles:


  • Threat Intelligence: Gathers information about external threats, like attacker motivations, tactics, and upcoming campaigns. Think of it as having a spy network in the cyber world, constantly gathering information about attacker motives, tactics, and upcoming activities.
  • Vulnerability Assessment: Identifies and prioritises internal weaknesses within your systems, networks, and applications. These weaknesses, called vulnerabilities, are like cracks in digital armour – openings that attackers can exploit to gain access to an organisation’s data or disrupt business operations.
  • Incident Response: Deals with active security incidents, those that have already breached your defences. This involves containing the damage, recovering systems, and learning from the event to prevent future occurrences.

Proactive Vs. Reactive

  • Threat Intelligence & Vulnerability Assessment: Proactive measures that help you identify and address risks before they become full-blown security incidents.
  • Incident Response: Reactive and comes into play after a security incident has been detected.


  • Threat Intelligence & Vulnerability Assessment: Preventative measures aimed at preventing security incidents from happening in the first place.
  • Incident Response: Minimise the damage and recover as quickly as possible from incidents that have already occurred.


More about Lorraine…

Lorraine O’Leary is a Senior Associate in the Infrastructure & Security division of Barden’s talent advisory and recruitment firm.

Graduating with First Class Honours in BSc Business Information Systems from UCC, Lorraine’s academic aptitude for technology laid a solid foundation for her career trajectory. In February 2021, she joined the Barden team and has been a driving force behind the growth of the emergent technology practice within Barden, contributing significantly from its inception.

In her role, Lorraine serves as a trusted advisor to technology professionals and clients, providing guidance and unbiased advice throughout their careers. In particular, she works directly with infrastructure and security professionals throughout Ireland. Connect with Lorraine on LinkedIn or via lorraine.oleary@barden.ie


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