10 Steps to Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity is chink in the armor of most companies, regardless of the size or type of activity. Considering how rapidly and blithely we’re moving towards global digitalization, it is crucially important to understand the basics and the importance of cybersecurity.
Thus, the number of cyberattacks in 2020 increased tremendously, comparing to 2019:
by 100% in the field of data breaches;
by 141% regarding the number of compromised records.
More than 80% of attacks were financially motivated, causing the average damage from a successful breach of 4,4 million dollars. No wonder that the field of cybersecurity proliferates, as businesses worldwide try to prevent and protect themselves from cybercrime.
Key Role of Cyber Awareness
A successful cyberattack could result in significant financial losses, reputational damage, devaluation of a brand, prolonged paralysis of activity, and even closure of a company. Around half of companies worldwide are unaware of cyber threats and related consequences. According to statistics, mid-level losses from a successful cyberattack count $200,000. However, not all attacked companies can recover from such damage. Thus, six-tenths of SMBs went out of business during the first half-year due to destructive aftermaths and financial debts. Besides, customers are losing their trust in a company, which was once exposed.
A well-thought-out cybersecurity strategy could prevent malicious hacking attempts and protect the company’s digital environment. Nowadays, enterprises tend to allocate funds and involve independent specialists to improve their cybersecurity systems.
Let’s have a closer look at the graph below. Businesses worldwide have spent more than $50 trillion on cybersecurity last year, surmounting this number in 2021:
From year to year, the level of investments in this field is increasing. Even a recent coronavirus pandemic hasn’t decelerated the growth. And such contributions are paying off since more than 87% of cyberattacks are prevented, causing no harm to the targeted organizations. But what is the secret of an efficient and capable cybersecurity system?
10 Steps to Cybersecurity
The creation and maintenance of a protected, sustainable digital environment, require a considered approach along with precise planning. Protective steps should be taken consistently and thoughtfully to pursue the following objectives:
Examine, define and prevent possible threats;
Make the organization as sustainable as possible;
Maintain a proper level of cybersecurity.
To achieve these vitally important objectives, an organization should follow the next steps:
- Increase Cybersecurity Awareness Among Employees
From the low-level employees to upper management, each staff member should be aware of possible cybersecurity risks. It decreases the chances of human error, which is the cause of nine-tenths successful data breaches. Overall awareness and consideration of potential threats help to strengthen the company's internal environment.
- Improve Network Security
Attackers can damage an organization only when the devices are connected to the Network. Security updates, trustworthy open-source software, managed network perimeter, and multi-leveled verification could ward off intruders.
- Prevent the Malware Incursion
Malware is one of the most common methods of data attacks. All data import and export operations should be monitored by special anti-malware software. The company's staff should be aware of malicious websites and other possible sources of malware.
- Manage Access Privileges
Only a limited number of employees should have access to sensitive and confidential information. By implementing a strict system of access privileges, you will reduce the risk of critical data leakages. The fewer accounts can access sensitive data - the better.
- Keep Your Software Updated
Up-to-date app versions, strong passwords, leading security software, and privacy configurations are fundamental conditions for cybersecurity. Hackers continuously learn about the commonly-used software security protocols, while regular updates plug the holes in them and fix past mistakes.
- Consider the Organization of Remote Working Process
The recent coronavirus pandemic forced many companies to switch to remote work. Thereby, employees began to use various collaboration and data exchange platforms for consistent communication. It is crucial to choose secure software, which is transparent and reliable. There are thousands of apps that have similar functionality. But only authorized software should be used and could be considered safe. Otherwise, you can never guess who will exploit or study your sensitive data and how well it is protected.
- Implement Backup Strategy and Incident-Response Protocol
Any organization should have an emergency plan for a successful hacking attempt. It is impossible to guess which part of the organization's infrastructure would be damaged or incapacitated. Backup copies of corporate data together with incident-response protocol will minimize the damage caused by a cyberattack.
- Test Your Own System
Advanced security software and services such as ethical hacking could detect and fix weak spots or security errors in the company’s infrastructure.
- Observe, Detect and Analyze
Intrusion detection systems notify network administrators about any unauthorized user or suspiciously high data traffic to the side server. Company’s network should be precisely monitored to check against hacking attempts and malicious software.
- Keep the Eye on Old Data
The average user or employee has multiple accounts where he leaves his passwords, emails, phone numbers, etc. Old websites with outdated security standards could become compromised, releasing private information to attackers.
It is good to track the number of work accounts and the history of all signups, which employees do. That will help to cut down the ways of how hackers could get into your business network. The listed strategies are aimed to protect and diminish the chances of a successful cybersecurity attack. It is a complex process, which will result in long-term benefits. Any company could fall victim to hackers, losing important credentials, confidential information, financial resources, and reputation. That’s why cybersecurity is so crucial nowadays.