Security incidents in Australian businesses are increasing at an alarming rate. A 2018 study by Cisco showed that 90 per cent of companies in the country reported that they receive up to 5,000 cyber threats a day.
Each cyber attack – whether it is phishing, Trojans or spyware – carries a large impact on your business. You risk losing crucial corporate information that could harm your employees and customers. Severe attacks could also disrupt your business’ daily operations, causing loss of revenue.
With increasing incidents of cyber attacks, adding cybersecurity measures to your business plans is crucial. The following steps help ensure the protection of your digital assets against growing security threats.
Assessing the Vulnerability of Your Network
A vulnerability assessment involves identifying and classifying vulnerabilities in a company’s computer systems, applications and network infrastructures to identify potential threats and risks. These are usually conducted by technology solutions firms by holding network security testing measures using tools like security scanners.
Aside from the vulnerabilities of the network, a business’ policies, key procedures and personnel’s approaches toward security are also reviewed. The assessment will give you a better understanding of your business’ security flaws and possible risks.
Creating a Cyber Plan
Creating a cybersecurity plan helps determine the assets you need to protect, the threats to those assets and the controls to protect them and your business. The plan also lists the responsibilities of your employees to protect the business’ technology and information. Some issues that this plan covers include what types of data should be shared, acceptable use of devices, and policies on handling and storing sensitive information.
Your cyber plan also needs to contain instructions on how to communicate the attack to your customers without losing their trust. Come up with strategies on how to compensate for the breach, financially or otherwise. It also helps to list your legal obligations when these incidents occur.
Training Your Employees
Your cybersecurity plan will not be effective if your employees don’t cooperate. Train your employees to be careful with business information by starting with a simple checklist that lists basic practices, such as locking a computer when not in use and reporting missing devices. Remind your employees to ensure that all devices and operating systems are up to date and that they don’t install software without IT approval, or simply keep administrator rights to IT or select authorised personnel.
Holding Cybersecurity Exercises
A cybersecurity exercise helps the organisation consider different risk scenarios and anticipate potential cyber threats. You can choose to hold a discussion-based exercise, an action-based exercise or a combination of both. To formulate an exercise, you can enlist the help of a technology solutions firm or your own IT department.
Some exercises are short and can be accomplished in as little as 15 minutes. They contain the scenario, discussion questions and the affected assets. Make sure to note down your employees’ responses then identify gaps that occurred during the exercises. Relaying the feedback from these exercises will then help determine further actions, such as boosting cybersecurity education or improving an IT process.
By being cyber-ready, your business has better chances of resisting a security threat. Armed with the knowledge of your network’s vulnerability and possible measures you can take to protect your system, you can proceed accordingly to boost the resilience of your digital assets.