Why Businesses Need Cyber-Resilience
Recent incidents regarding data breaches and malware attacks have scared businesses around the world to implement proper cybersecurity practices. And while this newfound focus on security is an overall gain in customer safety and security, there’s just one problem: not many businesses are focused on cyber resilience.
See, cybersecurity focuses on preventing incidents from occurring. Cyber resilience, however, focuses on mitigating the damage that is done during an incident.
No business is immune from attacks and data breaches, and it’s good practice to assume that a company is at risk 24/7. For this reason, every business should focus on cyber resilience as much as they do on cybersecurity. But first, it's vital that you go over the risks companies face on a daily basis.
Cyber Risks Facing Modern Companies
Malware—short for “malicious software”—takes many forms, from software that locks up a device until a ransom is sent to the author of the software (ransomware) to software that silently tracks and logs everything a user does (spyware).
Despite there being dozens of types of malware, there is only one truth about them: there is no good malware. Every business should view malware as a significant threat at all times.
Many companies in the past decade fell victim to breach after breach, data leak after data leak. But what, exactly, are data breaches and data leaks?
In simple terms, a data breach happens when third-parties breach a company's systems and steals data without consent from the company. A data leak, on the other hand, means either an insider or untrained employee leaked data to the outside from within.
IBM published a study in 2014 that detailed the leading causes of data breaches within companies. The study focused on one-thousand of IBM’s clients around the world and the attacks each client faced. By the end of the study, IBM reached the conclusion that 95% of successful attacks towards each business could be traced back to human error.
A lack of cybersecurity education leads to employees putting the business at risk every day, and without proper guidance, these risks will build up until the business suffers a major breach.
3 Ways Businesses Can Build Up Cyber Resilience
1. Create a Roadmap
The first thing any business should do is create a detailed roadmap on how it wants its cyber resilience program to look like and the steps needed to get there.
Whether it’s a roadmap focused on training employees on cyber resilience or a years-long roadmap focused on improvements in every facet of the business, such as a VPN download on all devices and keeping passwords varied (the recommended roadmap), the important thing is that the business follows it to the letter.
2. Train Employees About Proper Cybersecurity
A proper cyber resilience program means nothing if employees are out of the loop, constantly putting the business at unnecessary risk. Meaning a key component to a strong cyber resilience program is training all employees about proper cybersecurity.
Holding cybersecurity seminars, hiring professionals to talk to employees, requiring online courses to be completed: there are plenty of ways to keep employees trained and aware of modern cybersecurity methods and risks.
3. Install Detection Tools
Knowing about a breach or malware attack as soon as possible is key to a proper cyber resilience plan—the longer a leak goes unnoticed, or an attack left unmitigated, the more damage it will do. For this reason, a proper cyber resilience program will include a detection system capable of detecting attacks, leaks, and other areas potentially putting the business at risk.
Detection tools range from tools dedicated to detecting viruses and malware to programs that scan for suspicious network activity. Businesses would do well to take advantage of the range of capabilities detection software provides and implement them in a response plan.