Phishing scams, malware attacks, and social engineering are becoming costly threats to businesses. The 2013 Ponemon Institute/Symantec Cost of Data Breach Study found that the U.S. has highest total cost per data breach at $5.4 million. However Reuters published that many U.S. firms keep quiet about cyber attacks. The problem is pervasive, and the biggest way to prevent an attack on your business is through training.
Your company should already have a business continuity plan to continue operations during an emergency. Part of that plan, and turning it into a comprehensive risk management program, must include training your employees on how to respond to various threats. The threat of an information security breach is now more prominent than ever. You have to make preparing for cyber attacks part of your crisis team training.
What do underage drinking and information security have in common? If you’re a restaurant owner, you are at the mercy of your staff’s training when it comes to serving alcohol to underage customers. The same goes for information security. As a business owner, or leader of your organization, you have to train your employees on information security protocols to prevent a cyber attack on your business.
— Kevin Beaver, IT expert
Here are 5 ways to include preparing for information security attacks in your business continuity program:
1. Know what you’ve got on your network. Encouraging your end users to run virus scans and update their software isn’t enough. One PC infected with malware can spread quickly to thousands of users.
2. Understand how it’s currently at risk. Conduct a comprehensive risk assessment to test where your systems are weak and find vulnerabilities.
3. Get the right people on board. Have an executive stakeholder to serve as your advocate for preparing for cyber threats.
4. Implement the proper policies, procedures, and plans. Have an incident response plan and information security procedures so your IT team knows what to do in the event of a breach.
5. Enforce with technology whenever you can. Malware has the benefit of exploiting the complexity of systems. Anything with an IP address or URL can be hacked.
Then refine and repeat these steps over and over and over again. Develop an awareness program for employees, and conduct regular training and testing so your staff knows how to respond to a potential cyber attack.
This is a basic formula for managing information risks and, if you follow it, compliance will emerge and evolve naturally from these efforts. Remember, compliance doesn’t come in a box. It does come from developing a culture or preparedness. Click here to replay our information security and business continuity webinar, or request a demo with Preparis now.