When a breach occurs, what do you think causes the most damage? The answer is simpler than you think. New technologies like machine learning, artificial intelligence, and IoT have driven the scale and complexity of cyberattacks. If you are a business owner, you have every reason to be concerned as the threat of a possible attack continues to grow.
Many of the security threats we handle at ReachOut Technology are not elaborate, sexy, technologically new threats. Most of them seem to be fairly obvious but still are relevant cybersecurity issues. But does it make sense to stress over advanced threats when organizations can’t defend against the attacks they currently face?
Obviously, it’s important to take the necessary steps to prevent a breach, regardless of how fancy the tactic is the hackers use. Cybersecurity threats will continue to increase in 2021—just as the world is ever-evolving and more people are working from home, hackers evolve too. They are more motivated than ever before, have gotten smarter, and their tools are getting better. If an operating system is vulnerable, any business in any industry can be at risk.
Many organizations, especially small- to medium-sized businesses (SMD’s), haven’t put enough thought and effort into their security infrastructure. Having a security strategy is vital, and every organization right now needs help. Cybersecurity attacks are getting easier to launch and more complex for businesses to face.
We have more information than we’ve ever had before about what’s coming after us and how, yet most organizations have immature security strategies. I frequently see businesses pass off security issues to one part of the organization or another, and they get lost in the mix. Even worse is when organizations see security costs as overhead that don’t bring value.
If your company isn’t putting basic security measures in place, you’re setting yourselves up to be a prime target. Your business should be running updated operating systems – not older, no longer supported ones like Windows XP – and shut off unnecessary system processes.
Individuals and businesses are more connected than ever, but they don’t have the security awareness to protect themselves. Organizations can’t foresee the aftershock of a cyberattack when it hits. Now is the time to put a strategy in place to protect from a breach and plan to take the appropriate steps and help mitigate the resulting damage in the event a breach occurs. Organizations should create at least three lines of defense in their fight against current cyberattacks and new threats on the horizon. From my years of experience as a cybersecurity expert, I suggest the following:
First Line of Defense-
Ensure that you have an up-to-date firewall, spam filter (aka spam firewall) and an intrusion prevention system. Additionally, make sure your routers are enterprise-grade, as they have better security features.
Educate and Train Employees-
Possibly the most critical line of defense is your employees. Over ninety percent of successful data breaches start with phishing attacks, which use emails to lure employees into clicking on something they shouldn’t.
Provide your employees with security awareness training, which is required under the FTC Safeguards Rule. Put policies and procedures in place designed to increase security, such as:
- Require employees to change passwords every 90 days
- Patch all desktop-based applications weekly, if not daily
- Keep logging records
- Get an IT security audit once a year
- Obtain cyber liability insurance
- Create a cyber incident response plan and response team
You can’t create a business-aligned security strategy with a lack of expertise and immature programs. You must do what you can to get ten steps ahead, which means taking the necessary steps to make a breach as difficult as possible.
Partner with an MSP-
At a fraction of the price to hiring full time staff, partnering with an MSP can achieve the same end as adding an entire IT department. A n experienced MSP is able to offer even greater capability than an internal IT department because growing a successful IT services company has expertise in a number of technologies, manufactures and solutions.
At ReachOut Technology, we take a transformative approach to IT Security, Support, and Guidance. Partner with us, and you’ll have a collaborative team of Consultants, Security Experts, and engineers backing you up 24/7. For more information, contact ReachOut Technology and speak with one of my cybersecurity experts today. We will do everything we can to get you set up for success, because there’s no time to waste. What steps have you taken to protect yourself in 2021?