For the last couple of years, there has been an exponential increase in number of cyber security attacks. To give you some perspective, here are some statistics. According to statistics, ransomware attack grew by 350% and spear phishing attacks increased by 70% last year. When you take all this numbers into account, you realize the gravity of situation and grim state of affairs of cyber security. From a business standpoint, that is not good news.
Businesses are finding it tough to secure their digital assets from cyber criminals who find a way to intrude into private networks, steal sensitive business information and fly without leaving a trace. What can you do as a business in such a situation? In this article, you will learn about seven best security processes you should follow to safeguard your IT infrastructure from cyber attacks.
- Identify Your Network Vulnerabilities
First thing is first. Identify loopholes in your network and try to fix them before a hacker exploit them. Conduct vulnerability assessment to identify devices and digital assets that are at the biggest risk. It could be anything from HostNoc affordable dedicated servers to desktops, laptops to wireless access points, smartphones to USB drives. Once you find loopholes in your network take immediate action and plug in those gaps before hackers can take advantage of those vulnerabilities and caused irreversible damage to your business. The more devices that are connected to your network, the bigger the risk.
- Understand Your Cyber Security Risk
Every business is different and has different cyber security needs. Similarly, they face diverse cyber security risk with varying levels of threats. It is important for businesses to understand their own cyber security risk and decide on how much risk can be considered acceptable. Yes, it is easier to translate the risk into financial terms but not so in terms of non tangible factors such as reputation damage. After developing a clear understanding about the risk, you can devise an effective cyber security strategy and will be in much better position to respond to cyber security risks. Without a proper understand of risk, you will struggle to cope up with it and fall victim to cyber security attacks.
- Devise a Well Thought Out Strategy
Every business should have a cyber security strategy and a response plan. Having a cyber security strategy and policy is not enough, especially if you are not implementing it fully. Similarly, having a response plan will not be helpful for your business if you don’t execute your plan smartly. An effective response plan help you minimize the damage and prevent spread of risk. Keep an eye on specific scenarios when creating a response plan and cyber security strategy and ensure all the procedures work according to the plan. Test them in normal situation so they don’t let you down during a crisis situation. You don’t want to depending on procedures that don’t work in case of an attack.
- Educate and Build Awareness
Your employees are your weakest link and hackers are aware of that. That is why they frequently launch social engineering attacks to trick users into taking desired action. Businesses should educate their employees and train them to spot social engineering scams.
Build employee awareness about social engineering attacks and it will go a long way in minimizing the risk of social engineering attack. Never click on malicious links send to you via email or other channels. Launch a fake social engineering attack to identify employees who are more vulnerable to such attacks.
The more aware your employees are, the harder it will be for hackers to trick your employees into taking the desired action. Inform the IT department if you are a victim of a social engineering attack as soon as possible so they can prevent any damage.
- Identify The Root Cause of the Problem
You might have heard doctor tell patients that prevention is better than cure. Unbelievably, the same formula works in cyber security as well. What if your organization is infected by a virus? Identify the root cause of the virus. Root cause analysis can come in handy when it comes to identifying the cause of the problem and plug in loopholes so that hackers cannot exploit the same vulnerability again. You never know you might come across vulnerabilities that you have not expected.
- Fill In The Gaps With Patch Management
News of data breaches of large organizations constantly make headlines highlighting the fact that data breaches are more common than ever before. One of the main reasons for a data breach is lack of patch updates and poor patch management. Have a patch management strategy to ensure that all the latest patches are installed so that hackers cannot exploit the vulnerabilities found in older version of software and hardware to break into your systems and get access to your data. Apply patches as soon as they are available. This will help you to mitigate the risk. Make regular patching a habit and your business would stay safe from a lot of cyber security threats.
- Use Automation
There are instances when hackers might be able to slip through the radar and enter into your system and you resource constrained IT team fail to identify a data breach. Ever wished you could automate monitoring processes so that your small IT team can focus on value creation activities instead of checking for suspicious activities all the time? Thanks to automation, it is now possible.
Deploy automated protection solution that proactively detects any threat so you can take real time steps to minimize the damage without requiring any manual intervention. Yes, automated monitoring might not replace manual monitoring methods right away but it is a great way to reduce the burden from the shoulders of your IT team.
Which cyber security best practices your business follows in order to protect your IT assets? Feel free to share it with us in the comments section below.