Cyber attacks are getting more sophisticated and larger-scale. These include data theft, corporate spying and infiltration of industrial controls that disrupt manufacturing. Cybercrime is increasing in global scale.
Accenture reported recently that cybercrime has cost organizations an additional $1.4 million to $13million in 2018. It is better to prevent data breaches than respond when it’s too late.
Many companies now have a standard operating procedure to encourage proactive cyber attack prevention. Cyber attacks should be treated as a matter of when, where, and how. Security experts are well aware of this fact. What are the best practices for implementing a cyber security strategy across an organization?
How to Thwart Cyber Attacks
These best practices will allow you to think holistically and hopefully improve your cybersecurity awareness. These best practices will help you to stay ahead of any attack or data breach, as well as cybersecurity incidents.
1. Top-down policies can be used to improve security.
Policies must support best practices. Corporate governance must include cyber security. This requires buy-in from the top management, adequate funding for security hardware, training, and funding for external security services. All stakeholders should be given roles and responsibilities in the policy-making process. This chain should include IT leaders as well as corporate leaders.
Security is more than a cost. Management must realize this. Cybersecurity can be used for preventing losses and supporting new business opportunities. This can be achieved through improved customer trust, stronger supplier relationships, explorations of new revenue streams and better risk management with regard to potential acquisitions and divestments.
Senior managers and managed IT specialists should regularly conduct cost-benefit analyses for cyber security across all business units and functions. To determine the most cost-effective allocation, it is possible to use location inventory and data asset inventory. A million dollars might be too much for a business unit that has a $500,000 profit margin. These cost-benefit analysis are useful for determining growth strategies or cost projections.
Similar to the previous, IT-specific policies can be better informed by keeping an updated, detailed map of the organization’s overall cybersecurity architecture. This could include analyzing the organization’s attack surface, both internally and externally. This includes identifying potential risk areas in current applications and then finding ways to reduce them, such as reducing code execution, reducing entry point for untrusted users or eliminating services that are only requested by a few users.
2. Methods to support IT teams from the bottom up
Cyberattacks can be prevented, limited, or mitigated using a variety of methods if policies are in place for cyber security. It is important to update, patch and upgrade software regularly. It is important to review security products policies regularly. Monitoring alerts and incident logs is also important.
Networks should be divided using well-maintained firewalls to prevent lateral infections. All systems should be checked for potential penetration on a regular basis.
Access management systems are vital. It is crucial to restrict software access and user privileges. Securely store sensitive credentials, including passwords and SSH keys, in a central vault. Rotate privileged credentials, isolate temporary employees’ sessions from privileged accounts, scan for former employees with orphan accounts that might still allow unauthorized access, periodically scan for new passwords, and automate the process of transferring them.
All staff, managers, and employees must be trained in cybersecurity. This includes security gaps in mobile devices, unsecured communication, and email phishing attacks. Employees should report any suspicious activity or email that may be a threat to the network security or system security.
3. You can take proactive steps to detect and respond to cyber-threats.
Proactive cyber security is the best approach. Malware can be a threat for days, months or even years as an Advanced Persistent Threat (APT). Even if you think your system is normal, it is a good idea to assume that malware was installed on your computer.
It is essential to implement a security solution that scans for malicious files (threats, vulnerabilities, and others) and allows users to respond and confirm that endpoints are safe. This must be done regularly, preferably automatically, and should be available at all times in dynamic cloud environments. It might be worth looking into incident response and detection tools, which combine deep analysis with forensics-based capabilities. These tools can be used for assessing the health of your endpoints and validating what is running in memory at any time.
You may believe it is impossible to stop a cyberattack. Cyberattacks can almost always be stopped by endpoint security tools like EDR software, next-generation antivirus apps, strict security guidelines and compliance guidelines, as well as hardware like firewalls and multi-factor authentication devices.
Cyber attacks can be stopped with the right technology and people.
Request a Cyber Security Compromise and IT Risk Assessment
SpartanTec, Inc. can help with the initial steps to improving your cyber defenses. Infocyte’s compromise assessment can be used to quickly and affordably assess your security status, identify hidden threats, vulnerabilities, and determine ways that you can improve your IT hygiene.