In today’s world, cybersecurity for businesses all around the world face a significant risk of cyberattacks, especially the ones in the financial, IT, and retail sectors. New, sophisticated malware techniques and ransomware have lowered the barrier of entry. Therefore organizations need to strengthen their cybersecurity posture to manage potential risks.
Cybersecurity posture measures how well is your cybersecurity team able to fight against an attack and how much is the organization prepared for a potential attack. A strong cybersecurity posture means that the organization has taken all necessary steps and has processes in place to protect a business from external cyber threats.
Considering the current cybersecurity environment with businesses being a major target of cybercriminals, strengthening cybersecurity posture needs to be a top priority.
Steps to improve your cybersecurity posture
The first step to improving your cybersecurity posture is to conduct a security risk assessment to get a bigger picture of where your business stands. Performing a risk assessment of your organization will help you identify all possible areas that need improvement and are vulnerable to security.
In general, a risk assessment identifies all IT assets at your company, the potential impact of a data breach, the likelihood of exploits and more. This information is necessary in case of a data breach. The risk assessment will also help you determine which actions need to be taken to improve the security posture at your organization.
Make sure your employees have access to all the necessary security tools to ensure maximum data protection. If you are a small company with a few employees, you can start with security tools for data encryption like VPNs.
With more and more employees working from home, a VPN is the best tool to strengthen security. For example, there are multiple best VPNs for Canadians available in the market that companies in Canada can use as a first step to strengthening their cybersecurity posture.
Once you have successfully conducted a risk assessment and identified potential risks and vulnerabilities, it is time to rank these risks based on their potential impact on your business. This will help your cybersecurity team to prioritize risks and work on them one by one to improve the entire security posture.
One technique used by security experts to prioritize risks is called Cybersecurity ratings. Security rating grades an organization’s security performance and how well it protects its data. The highest security rating is ‘A’ that shows the company has a low number of vulnerabilities and threat indicators. Similarly, the lowest rating is ‘F’ and companies having F-rating are more likely to be victims of a cyberattack than the ones with an A rating.
Once you have conducted a risk assessment and have prioritized vulnerabilities, the next step to improve security posture is to have an incident management plan in place. Having an incident management plan in place beforehand is a necessary proactive measure in an organization considering the recent increase in cybersecurity and ransomware attacks.
Without a risk management plan, your cybersecurity team will not know where to start when an actual data breach occurs. If your cybersecurity team already has a risk management plan ready, it will help detect the attack early on and will reduce the time it takes to counter the attack and remedy the situation in the future.
A risk mitigation plan is not only required for big organizations but is also important for small companies as they are targeted more by hackers as compared to big companies. In fact, a study shows that 60% of small businesses shut down within six months because of falling victim to a cyber attack.
With so many IoTs and devices connected to the network, it is impossible for the cybersecurity team in an organization to stay on top of all potential security risks and threats.
And that’s not it.
Relying on a single IT person leaves room for human error and security gaps that can give hackers a perfect opportunity to attack.
Therefore, it is essential to incorporate technology into your systems for automating threat detection.
There are a lot of tools available online that can help you automate threat detection by integrating it into every app so it can recognize the threat before human intervention.
You can also use various tools such as NAT firewalls, VPNs, and more to strengthen network security.
Most companies fail at detecting security loopholes and threats because they undergo security audits at the end of the quarter. It gives an ample amount of time for the attack to initiate and spread. However, if a company implements security testing applications and systems into their network, it would help identify vulnerabilities quickly.
Here are some important testing methods that you can implement in your organization for strengthening your security posture:
- Static Application Security Testing: It helps to identify vulnerabilities in your code.
- Dynamic Application Security Testing: This shows the admin, the attacker’s perspective to identify security gaps and vulnerabilities in the system.
- Runtime Application Self-Protection: It uses real-time application data to detect attacks as they occur, keeping you up to date with recent changes.
Using these steps will help you strengthen your company’s security posture and ensure your data is protected at all times.
Considering a sharp rise in cyber attacks, cybercrime should be at the top of your mind to help you defend against threats and data breaches, no matter how small or large your company is.