One of the biggest threats to companies these days is a cyber-attack, which is why it is important to make sure you do everything you can to protect your firm against one. Read on to find out whether you have done enough or if you are still susceptible to catastrophic online breaches.
- Don’t overspend
The first thing most companies do to protect themselves is spend as much as they can afford on cyber security. However, Gartner has told businesses: “No matter what you spend, you won’t be perfectly protected against cyber-attacks.”
In fact, it stated raising operational costs too much may damage the company’s ability to function and achieve other goals.
It is also important to balance security against business targets, as it is easy to block certain programmes, applications or actions as a result of security concerns. However, this can impact the operation of the company and mean it is never able to reach its full potential or the expectations of investors.
- Analyse risk
Organisations that do not have the time to analyse the risk of each threat tend to treat them all the same. However, this can lead to a false sense of security, which can cause bigger problems further down the line.
Instead, businesses should “recognise, report and discuss systemic risk as part of normal security governance”.
- Reliance on old passwords
It sounds obvious, but so many people and businesses fall into the habit of keeping the same passwords for years, so they can remember them easily. This is a sure-fire way to put data at risk, as it becomes easier to hack into private documents if passwords are not regularly changed.
Remind staff to frequently alter their passwords and make sure the same is done for shared areas too.
Do not forget to regularly back up important documents on other hard drives or the cloud, just in case one of these is exposed to a cyber-attack. In this situation, at least the data is still accessible.
- Use security professionals
Many businesses rely on staff being able to take on several roles, but it is worthwhile investing in an in-house security professional or outsourcing IT support and services to experts.
CPO Magazine recognises this will ensure the best protection, as they are specialists in preventing cyber-attacks and detecting when the company is at risk of one.
A report from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) revealed medium-sized and large businesses typically lost £19,400 in the last 12 months, an increase of £6,000 from the year before.
This does not include indirect costs, such as staff time, which could make the final outlay far greater.
Therefore, incurring a cyber-attack could have a significant financial impact on businesses, emphasising the need for security professionals to lower the risk of a breach.
Despite this, DCMS revealed less than one-fifth (19 per cent) of businesses have a formal incident response plan and only 39 per cent have specific roles they undertake in the event of a cyber-attack.