Finding the right IT solutions for your small business can be difficult. No matter what route you take, your cybersecurity needs to be a top priority, and now is the time to focus on improving your strategy.
October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month. There are a lot of “scary” cyber stats out there that Massachusetts businesses can no longer ignore, including the fact that $4.2 billion was lost to cybercriminals in the U.S. in 2020 alone.
This year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month theme is “Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart.” But while you may be smart about the links you click and the information you give out, are you confident that all the people in your organization – and all the people connected to your organization’s network – are just as cyber savvy?
A strong cyber security strategy will involve a system for knowing everyone who accesses your data and why, how they interact with your network, and what you can do to keep out bad “people” (who are sometimes bots) or kick them out fast if they do get into your systems.
Our people at Secure Networks can help. Everyone must do their part, and we’re here to provide the IT management that your business needs to be secure. Here, we’ll take a look at the role your employees, your incident response team, your vendor management partners, your cyber liability insurance partner, and everyone else plays in your cybersecurity.
A business is only as good as its employees, and the same is true for a business’ cybersecurity. An employee who is a weak link could, accidentally, take down an entire network. It’s crucial that all employees know how to spot a phishing attack and how to follow important protocols, like using multifactor authentication (MFA), whenever possible.
Employees need to know how to work both efficiently and securely. It’s possible to balance productivity with a strong cybersecurity strategy. Through the right IT training and tools, employees can learn how to better leverage the tools you pay for (like the programs in the Microsoft Office Suite) to be more efficient, while maintaining a high level of security.
Your Incident Response Team and Strategy
No matter how much you prepare, the worst may still happen and your network is breached. After your data has been exposed, every second matters. What do you do?
It’s time for the incident response team to step in and take control. If you don’t have an incident response team, then establishing one should be at the top of your to-do list. No matter the size of your business, it’s essential that you have a disaster plan if one of these attacks occur.
Your incident response strategy should include:
- back-up planning
- asset restoration
- disaster recovery
- communications planning
IT management teams can help establish – and implement if an attack takes place– a thorough incident response strategy.
One specific type of incident to watch out for is a successful ransomware attack. With the help of an IT support team, you can work to prevent ransomware attacks by implementing best practices, such as setting up firewalls, using immutable backups, and segmenting your network, among others.
Your Vendor Management Partners
No business operates in isolation. To run smoothly, most businesses must use third-party vendors. Typically, these vendors themselves operate by using the services of other vendors. This web of connections can make operations more efficient and better for the customer – but they also create a massive digital footprint, leaving more places for bad actors to hack their way in.
To protect your network, it’s essential that your IT solutions include practicing vendor risk management. First, evaluate whether you truly need to outsource or use a vendor in a certain area. Do you need the risk of adding another third party to your network?
Then, make sure you know how all of your vendors handle their IT. Can they prove their commitment to a robust cybersecurity strategy? Find out the answer before you sign any contracts. Work with a technology consulting team to determine the risk vendors may pose to your network.
Your Cyber Liability Insurance Partner
Cyber liability insurance covers some expenses if your business falls victim of a cyberattack. This insurance covers certain losses, such as costs associated with customer notification, credit monitoring, legal fees, and fines. But it doesn’t cover everything.
There are two types of cyber liability insurance: first-party coverage and third-party coverage. With a first-party policy, you will be covered for some of the costs that directly impact your business. A third-party policy will cover lawsuits against your business if you are sued by a client for failing to prevent a breach at their company.
Cyber liability insurance can be extremely helpful, but it may not cover every cost incurred during a breach. Work closely with the people at your cyber liability insurance firm to understand your coverage.
If your business suffers a breach, you’ll have to manage the aftermath. Other people – your employees, clients, customers, stakeholders, etc. – will need to know what happened and what’s being done to manage the breach. As the incident response team works to resolve the disaster, it’s imperative that you quickly communicate with everyone else.
You should explain what your company is doing to manage the breach and offer help to your customers. As soon as you know which data was exposed, you should communicate that information. The key is to consistently, clearly communicate with the public.
Your Expert IT Solutions MSP “People” – Secure Networks!
Many small- and medium-sized businesses, and even in-house IT support teams, don’t exactly know where to start when it comes to creating a security awareness training and culture program that will work for their organization.
Our team at Secure Networks can help you implement programs to grow the culture of security every business needs. Secure Networks will work with all of your people to implement a strong cybersecurity policy.