Understanding and adapting to today’s threat landscape means developing a robust cyber security strategy. It doesn’t matter if your business has five employees or 5,000, developing a strategy to prevent cyber breaches is job one for today’s IT professional.
That’s because the threat has multiplied exponentially along with our network usage. From new trends in malware, ransomware worms, DDoS attacks using IoT devices, to cyber terrorism as an act of warfare, the threats are real, evolving, and very dangerous.
How can a cyber security strategy help to mitigate these risks and prevent a data breach?
Old School Cyber Security Strategy Versus 2017
Traditionally, cyber security encompassed a wide or local area network with static assets and a concentric ring of protection around them. That was so 2006. Today, our IT networks span an array of digital devices that access our internal corporate networks. From Internet of Things (IoT) devices to employee handhelds, the IT ecosystem has evolved into multiple touch points across a virtually unlimited spectrum of entry points. LANs and WANs are giving way to cloud computing environments that exist wherever and whenever we want to work.
While firewalls, intrusion prevention, encryption, and two-factor authentication are important, even blockchain has shifted into the spotlight as part of an evolving series of cyber security tools. Information Age suggests that “Cyber security is not an IT issue, it is a business-critical issue.”
If you’re not worried about this new infrastructure and how to protect it, you are simply not paying attention to the risk.
The Future State of Your Cyber Security Strategy
For small to medium sized businesses without dedicated security specialists, building a cyber security strategy can be difficult, if not near impossible. Today’s IT environment requires working with a managed security services provider to mitigate your risk.
A managed service firm can assess and then develop a cyber security strategy that includes a business continuity and remediation plan in the event of a breach. Crowe Horwath says an effective cyber security strategy must encompass the people, processes, and technology that make up today’s sprawling IT infrastructures.
Specifically, look for a plan that:
- Includes a governance structure to monitor the infrastructure and the data it houses.
- Is comprehensive in scope to include every device that accesses the infrastructure.
- Includes a cloud based DNS and other tools in order to filter network activity and block potential threats.
- Offers threat modeling, breach mitigation, and a risk analysis as part of the process.
- Has incident response and business continuity planning.
- Features dedicated cyber security resources, not just an in-house IT team.
Creating an effective cyber security strategy should include a process of looking at the network from the outside, as a hacker would, searching for any points of vulnerabilities and then creating a risk mitigation procedure to shore up weak areas.
We believe an effective cyber security strategy is a living document that will evolve along with changes to the threat matrix. Testing the plan, identifying ways to improve, and engaging employees in the success of the venture all will create a more effective implementation of real cyber security for your business. Contact CWPS today to find out how we can help you mitigate your cyber risk.