Cybercriminals and hackers are always trolling businesses. They exploit common mistakes and flaws to systems, then steal or hold the business ransom. These scenarios are increasing and at an alarming rate, so don’t let your business be an easy target of cyber crime and learn to tackle cyber security threats.
Let’s see 7 common cybersecurity mistakes you can fix right now:
- Integrating the old and new
When new threats emerge, it’s tempting to implement new measures on top of existing ones, without better planning. How will these integrate? Each measure has its own set of alerts, dashboards, and so on, which means more things to stay on top of. The lack of integration will make it difficult to see threats holistically and even harder to respond quickly.
The fix: look for measures that are designed to work together and integrate with your existing systems.
- Lack of security expertise
A lot of businesses have limited IT security specialist resources in house. Everyone is focused on the business and activities, rather than security. There is a common feeling of "that won't happen to us", cyber criminals rely on that attitude being prevalent.
The fix: reach out for help! Consider partnering with a specialist provider who can give you guidance and show you areas for improvement. They might suggest implementing automated, software-based processes that can monitor your systems continuously and take action when a cyber threat is detected. Also, educate your staff on security awareness and cyber security basics, so that everyone can be part of the solution and have cyber security awareness.
- Unsecured personal devices
How many ways do you access your business data? Almost every employee in the modern workplace has at least 1 laptop, a personal or business smart phone, and a tablet; especially during remote times. Hackers are smart and attempt access through many possible endpoints.
The fix: endpoint management tools can eliminate the complexity of multiple user credentials by giving each employee a single, secure identity to access all your network resources. Tools like Multi-Factor and Two-Factor Authentication offers another layer of information security.
- You’re not “too small” to be a target
Cyber attackers don’t care about the size of your business, and continue to target smaller businesses assuming you may be complacent or unprepared. In cyber security news, studies show nearly 1 in 4 businesses with fewer than 250 employees have been targeted.
The fix: invest in cyber security essentials, but remember these hackers are smart, so you should assume you can still be attacked or breached. Create an incident response plan, ensure continuous monitoring for any suspicious activity, and organise the appropriate resources for a quick response to reduce any potential damage. Ensure your disaster recovery plan includes backup and restoration of data.
- Overlooking the security of the cloud
Security is complex and sometimes hard to stay on top of. The right partner and a cloud solution can do much of the heavy lifting and provide smart ways to protect your data properly.
The fix: moving to the cloud doesn’t need to be a huge and expensive one-time job. Evaluate your needs and make the move in stages. A good IT partner will highlight the importance of cyber security strategy and compliance measures within your solution.
- Leaving data unprotected
Data travels outside of your control when it’s shared by either your employees, customers, or partners. That’s not to say that you should lockdown everything so that your employees try to find a workaround. Balance protection with productivity by focusing on security at the data level.
The fix: categorize your data based on how sensitive and critical it is to your business. Protect what’s most important with the strongest measures, such as restricted access, limited sharing privileges, and encryption.
- An incident management plan
Whilst we may be naïve in thinking cyber security breaches would never happen to our business, they do occur and when they do, they are usually quick and vigorous. Time is really of the essence; with no disaster recovery businesses are at greater risk. If the unthinkable happens, the cyber security incident plan needs an owner, with fixed measures in place, to mitigate the damage as much as possible. This is why a cyber security policy is important.
The fix: Create a plan to alert key contacts across departments including HR, Senior management, PR, and insurance. Have a clear escalation path with allocation of responsibility, regulatory guidance and contingency measures to help maintain business operations if IT functions are down. Finally, ensure incident flows and management plans, including checklists and contact details that are accessible ‘offline’.
Reduce risk and build your security strategy.
Even if you haven’t been victim of an attack (and let’s hope you never do) assume that you are always a target. Look for cyber security specialists who can help you plan a step-by-step strategy which protects, detects, and responds to any threats that may come your way.