Cyber-attacks are no longer a matter of ‘if’, but rather ‘when’. Preventing an attack could save a company millions of dollars and help preserve their reputation among their customers. In fact, according to the Ponemon Cost of a Data Breach Study (2017), a single data breach in Australia costs companies, on average, $3.6milion. This price goes up by $3.1million for businesses who fail to comply with Notifiable Data Breath regulations and does not take into account the loss of customer loyalty, or the time spent inoperable and taken to recover lost systems.
While companies can recover successfully from an attack, being able to prevent one, or reduce its impact, is a far better, cheaper option. This begs the question – what can a business do to prevent a threat before it happens, and what can they do to reduce the impact of a threat when it inevitably occurs?
Prevent Cyber Threats
A multi-layered approach is vital to forming an effective defence against cyber threats. No tactic is 100% effective, which means that multiple need to be used to provide the best protection. However, having multiple layers of protection does not mean that security is complicated or difficult to manage. Cyber Security Solutions, like those offered by MOQdigital and Cisco, enables streamlined, transparent control and the opportunity to leverage services to meet future needs. There are five things companies can do to help reduce their cyber threat risk.
- Encryption: Encryption is a vital part of engaging with an online marketplace, and helps companies protect their data and sensitive assets against attack.
- Detection: Having a good intrusion detection tool is vital to corporate security, as they will notify companies of potential threats and allow businesses to monitor their systems more closely.
- Updates: When companies begin building their infrastructure, they usually incorporate security into their design. However, these systems need to be regularly updated to remain secure. This is the same as with introduced security software, with companies needing to apply patches and updates as soon as they become available to ensure that any vulnerabilities in old software are addressed as quickly as possible.
- Protective Software: Anti-virus and anti-malware software helps improve the immunity of a device and its software, and can act as a first and last line of defence for companies encountering a cyber threat.
- Passwords: Passwords add a layer of protection for companies, and organisations should be enforcing the use of passwords on company devices, and on any device that has access to corporate information.
- Restrictions: Not all data within a company should be accessible to everyone. Businesses need to assess their security protocols and understand who has access to what – and why. Only those with appropriate authorisation should be able to access sensitive information, and levels of security – and restriction – should be applied to ensure ongoing protection.
Reduce the Impact of a Cyber Threat
Even the most prepared company will, eventually, encounter a cyber attack. However, if they are prepared to mitigate their risk factors, they can reduce the impact of an attack dramatically. Businesses who are capable of reducing the effects of a cyber threat are those who:
- Have prepared infrastructure: Having infrastructure that can gather and analyse data to create a security intelligence is an asset to every business engaging in a digital marketplace. Cisco technology allows for thorough security automation, the identification of vulnerabilities, detection of malware, and the opportunity to take appropriate action before a threat has caused significant damage.
- Understand the attack: After a cyber threat has occurred, it is time to ask the tough questions. What happened, how did it happen, and what was the damage? Companies who have sustained an attack need to understand its origins to prevent a similar event from occurring in the future.
- Have Backups: Businesses who regularly back up their information maintain the backbone of their business. Saving data to a backup outside of the hard drive or cloud is a simple, straightforward way to guarantee that vital assets remain accessible in the event of a disaster or attack.
- Utilise Recovery-as-a-Service: Recovery-as-a-Service allows organisations to restore their systems quickly following an outage, attack, or disaster. This includes cyber attacks, natural events such as floods, and network outages – all of which can compromise corporate security and data integrity. Having a good recovery plan allows a business to minimise the effect of an event, and get back up and running as efficiently as possible.
If you are interested in securing a better, brighter future for your business, you need to be prepared to face any eventuality.
Not quite sure where to start on your security journey? MOQdigital can help with a Cisco Umbrella Proof of Value.