The Value of Proprietary Software

The Economic Case

Business is nothing more than a set of lists and the processes for managing them.

You can run just about any legitimate business with a spreadsheet and a telephone.

The value of any business consists of:

  1. the assets that can be sold for cash, and;
  2. the discounted value of future cashflow.

Software built well accomplishes the very important task of efficiently managing the lists so that more cashflow can be produced.

When it comes time to sell a business, potential buyers want reliable systems of profit production. Custom software is the most efficient way to deliver what a business buyer most values.

The Security Case

Free software is never free. The people who made it will get paid one way or another. So if it is offered free you should assume it has security flaws that will be exploited for profit by entities you do not control.

Commonly used software is easily exploited regardless of its cost because every application of any size will have flaws that can be uncovered over time. From dependency updates to compatibility downgrades, the network is perpetually in flux. Things break, and when they do, malicious hackers will build automated tools to exploit the resultant flaws.

By combining custom software with an effective security posture, it is possible to eliminate most of a firm’s potential cyberattack surface.

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