Steps in Understanding a Data Breach

01 Nov 2018, MOQdigital Marketing

Business Continuity Planning


Data breaches in business are no longer a matter of ‘if’ but rather of ‘when’. Many companies have already been breached and do not realise it, and many will encounter breaches that could cripple their entire operation. The best way to react to and recover from this kind of catastrophe is to have a good recovery strategy in place; one that includes backups, compliance, and a thorough understanding of what went wrong – and why. Indeed – the what and the why are the primary challenges that IT teams face when encountering a breach. They must not only understand what kind of breach has occurred and how it impacts their corporate infrastructure, but also why the event happened in the first place, and what its influence will be in the long and short term.

Step one: Understanding the data breach. In a digitally driven market, the security landscape is constantly evolving – and so are the threats therein. Businesses are always encountering new vulnerabilities and loopholes. These may come in the form of new networks, unsecured devices, phishing emails, worms, bots, viruses, and more. A single infection could take down an entire corporate infrastructure. This is why IT teams must not only understand their vulnerabilities but also how to address them immediately and efficiently. Understanding a breach involves not only knowing where it came from but also:

  •  Isolating the infection to protect other infrastructure and data
  • Backing up the data that has been affected, if possible
  • Removing the infection
  • Taking steps toward recovery

This seems pretty simple – and it can be if a team is working together on the same recovery strategy. This strategy must include compliance, especially if the data affected is of a personal nature. This includes bank details, health records, addresses, birthdays, and more. Under new national and international regulations, all companies who identify a data breach have 30 days to report it to the relevant governing body or risk facing fines of over 2million.

Step two: Acknowledging compliance requirements. There are new Notifiable Data Breach regulations, as well as General Data Protection regulations that must be adhered to in a digital market. Understanding these is essential to recovering from a data breach. Indeed, reporting what data has been affected will also give a business a comprehensive understanding of what they may have lost. In a cloud-oriented market, having backups is fast becoming a requirement. Sensitive information can cause a significant issue if lost or compromised, and in the event of a data breach, those businesses who are able to backup and restore their data are those that will survive and succeed.

Step three: Backups. Solutions like Backup-as-a-Service enables business continuity. A complete end-to-end solution, it assists businesses in protecting critical data, complying with internal and external regulatory requirements, and simplifies backup and recovery processes. It helps enterprises see patterns and restore their operations as quickly and as efficiently as possible. This means that companies can stay operational – no matter what. It also gives a company the time they need to understand their breach and pursue vulnerability and penetration testing to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.

If you are unsure about your business’ ability to remain operational following a data breach, reach out to MOQdigital today. Our experienced consultants can help you discover the right Business Continuity Plan for your needs, and tailor a solution that is within budget, easy to use, and a good investment in a digitally driven market.