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Is your Cyber Security up to scratch and how can you check & take action?

This might be stating the obvious but all businesses operating nowadays need to have a comprehensive Cyber Security Strategy in place in order to stop data breaches, malware as well as any other Cyber threats. The whole point of having a Cyber Security Strategy is to make sure that your business is well equipped to be able to detect any threats, have the best protection as well as the ability to follow a certain process if a Cyber-attack occurs. 

Given the fact that we are all used to remote working by now because of COVID-19, most businesses that are cautious will take the time to review all their existing Cyber Security protocols to make sure that these are appropriate for remote working along with analysing any associated risks of doing so.  

In our latest article, we will discuss if your cyber security is up to scratch and how you can check and take action where required. 

When is it the time to check that your Cyber Security is up to scratch? 

When it comes to cyber security, no business is safe from being the subject of a cyber-attack. You can be attacked at any time by anyone without any warning whatsoever. No matter how good your cyber security is, it can still have vulnerabilities so you need to make sure that you have all bases covered by having a well thought out plan of actions you would take if a breach would to occur. 

If you have put cyber security at the bottom of your priority list and your current security protocols don’t have a plan for security breach responses, you need to bring this back to the top of your priority list and review your current cyber security arrangement and plans. 

Poor training & dated tools 

Believe or not, many organisations still to this day are using outdated tools and systems to protect their business assets and don’t invest in tailored cyber awareness training, which immediately puts them into the ‘at risk’ category that could see them suffer from a cyber-attack. By just having a basic firewall and standard antivirus system in place doesn’t cut the mustard anymore and with the significant advancements in technology as well as methods of penetration increasing rapidly in 2020, you are setting your business up for a fall to anyone that is looking to bring down your business. 

Has it been years since you last audited your Cyber Security? 

Even the very best Cyber Security strategies can become dated. The ever changing and sophisticated nature of cyber-attacks has led to a rapid rise in the numbers. If you haven’t reviewed your strategies for a while, then you are putting your business at risk of a significant breach. Making sure that your internal IT team or managed services provider are looking at this on a regular basis and making improvements to both your process and protocols is the best solution to keep your business and assets safe. 

How regularly should my business review its security strategy? 

The first port of call for your business is to find out when the last review was completed and what actions were taken as a result of the recommendations. 

Realistically, you should be looking to complete a security risk assessment at least on a yearly basis to make sure that any potential threats are identified, assigned to a member of your team and that a comprehensive plan is put together in order to nullify the risk. However, despite this it is important to regularly monitor and make improvements as a matter of course.  

If it has been more than a year since you last conducted a security risk assessment, you may need to look at your strategy again which could identify some not-so-obvious factors that could increase the Cyber Security risk in your business. From this, a list of changes can be formulated and assigned to a member of your IT team to implement. 

5 of the best tips for improving your Cyber Security Strategy 

If you need to review your Cyber Security Strategy, the next thing you need to know is how to action this: 

  • Identify your assets – If you are unsure about what the assets are in your business, no matter whether they are technological, people or information then you can't give them a value. 
  • Assess your assets – Once your assets have been identified, you need to decide how vital they are to your overall day to day operations. From this, you can categorise them into a priority list with those at the top the main focus of your attention. 
  • Carry out a risk assessment through a risk framework. You need to look at the risks for each asset and formulate an approach that works for your business. You will find that most businesses use a scale from 1 to 5 for both impact and likelihood. From this you can identify the values that can be attributed to each asset as well as allocate an overall owner who is in charge of that asset. 
  • Produce a plan to determine the action that will be undertaken once a risk has been identified. For this you will need to have a firm grasp of what your business’s risk tolerance level is. Are you happy to accept a risk that falls between 1 and 5? Will the cost outweigh the risk value and is that something you can accept? Once you have all this information you can then decide on which actions to take against certain risks. 
  • Select controls. Review the highest scoring risks and determine how you want to keep those in check. This can be done in a number of ways through training, people, technology or a hybrid approach using all three. It is at this point you need to do what is best for your business, what can be accomplished with the budget you have and will it work to reduce the level of risk in your business. 

After the above steps have been completed and addressed any problems, bring your attention back to the overall Cyber Security Strategy. For the most comprehensive of strategies you will need to make use of these four key elements: 

  • Identifying and reviewing of cyber threats 
  • Installing tools and processes to combat these threats 
  • Reviewing, analysing and improving where required as part of your internal protocols. 
  • Integrating rapid security breach response protocols into your business 

This can all seem a little daunting if you don’t have the time or resources to complete this task internally. Some businesses find it much easier to outsource this work to an external Cyber Security provider such as Advantage to seek advice from, an outsider's opinion on your business as well as their expertise and knowledge around recent threats and processes. 

Keep up to date on the latest Cyber Security trends 

With the ever-changing nature of the digital world, staying up to date with the latest tech news and research should be high on the list of priorities for any good IT professional. Making sure that your team is on top of the latest advancements in the Cyber Security field is crucial, completing necessary training courses where gaps in knowledge appear. 

Outsourcing your Cyber Security 

As we mentioned above, not every business has the capabilities internally to give Cyber Security the right level of attention needed so many turn to external Cyber Security providers. These businesses such as Advantage know their field inside out and will be able to provide you with a comprehensive plan without anyone internally being involved. 

If you would like to find out more about how Advantage can help your business with tailored cyber awareness training, getting your business Cyber Security Certified or any other Cyber Security related solutions then please get in touch with our team of IT experts today

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