The importance of a multi-pronged cyber security policy in today’s evolving tech environment
Are you a business owner operating in New York who is unsure of whether you’re meeting the necessary regulatory requirements for your industry? If your organization resides in New York and reports to the state’s Department of Financial Services, there are a number of cybersecurity requirements outlined in 23 NYCRR Part 500 to help protect potentially vulnerable customer data that may reside on your systems – kept in-house or in the cloud.
Below are a few common cybersecurity measures that are often put in place to protect your company data from the evolving tactics of cyber criminals.
Robust firewall solution
It’s important to think of your firewall as your perimeter defense mechanism. With a robust firewall in place, your perimeter is protected from cyber criminals attempting to infiltrate your systems and it can alert you when it happens (a core requirement of the NY cybersecurity law). There are even some advanced firewalls that will “talk” to all of your endpoints, actively monitoring them to help quickly identify any compromised systems and immediately limit network access to these devices until the issue is resolved; CyberGuard360 uses these firewalls because of this enhanced security feature. These hardware firewalls can be monitored and adjusted remotely to ensure your team can focus on core business activities as opposed to being bogged down with the nuances of network security.
Defense through training, software, and automation
Once you’ve secured the perimeter of your network, it’s important to realize that your work has only just begun. Cyber security is a knowledge base that needs to be updated regularly, and it’s important to use a multi-pronged approach that not only reduces the chances of a breach, but also ensures that if and when data is compromised, you’re properly prepared. Below are some of the defense-based tools used to protect an organization as well as any personal information that resides on servers hosted on-premises or in the cloud.
With nearly 5 billion web pages and some 205 billion emails being sent each day, the Internet is ripe with malware-laden content ready to wreak havoc and steal your livelihood. This comes in the form of an infected website you may visit that downloads the malware in the background so you can’t see it but becomes a malignant cancer in your network; or by way of an email landing in your inbox from your friend, UPS, the IRS, the CEO or … with an attachment that you have to open now. That attachment unleashes a ransomware attack that brings your business to a screeching halt. Content filtering, oft times available for your firewall or more advanced anti-malware tools, offers protection from such malicious websites or emails. Using a program to prevent access to certain items which may be harmful if opened or accessed, content filtering filters items that are executables, emails, or websites that are known to be harmful (or look like they may be).
For years, antivirus software was sufficient to protect your machines from cyber criminals. Today, antivirus software alone is simply not enough to protect against the current threat landscape. Anti-malware software works in tandem with antivirus programs to identify and protect against the 82,000 new malware threats that are released each day. These anti-malware solutions also employ big-data analytics and behavior-based analysis that can spot ransomware and other social engineering threats that lead to millions of infections each year.
Despite the best efforts of companies around the country, the number one cause of security breaches occur due to intentional or unintentional human error. For this reason, it’s incredibly important that your cyber security policies include training mechanisms to ensure your employees are up to speed on the latest cyber threats. Today’s threats will likely quickly become obsolete, so this training needs to be ongoing and in-depth.
In addition to training, it’s important to regularly update employees with literature surrounding potential issues. This could be through a corporate intranet or an email newsletter outlining current cyber threats. This consistent information may be the difference that keeps your employees from opening that suspicious attachment before it’s too late.
Automated threat detection
It’s unrealistic to believe that IT personnel will be able to spot and react to each and every potential threat. However, thanks to new automation technology, organizations can utilize behavior based threat-detection tools to identify irregular patterns that often point to potential security issues. This area of cyber security is constantly evolving and there is no doubt that automation will continue to be at the forefront of most cyber security processes.
Business continuity in the face of a cyber attack
If your organization has yet to fall victim to any type of cyber-attack, statistics show that your days are numbered. With 60% of small businesses going out of business within six months of an attack, it’s critical that yours is doing all it can to protect itself from these threats. Backing up your critical data and having data recovery processes in place in the event of data loss can be the difference between your business surviving and having to close its doors.
Interested in a cyber security assessment?
If you’re unsure whether your organization is properly prepared for a cyber-attack, give the IT security experts at CyberGuard360 a call. We would be happy to provide a complimentary cyber security assessment to identify any potential vulnerabilities within your network and offer guidance on how to prepare for evolving threats. Contact our team of security experts today at 844-315-9882 or fill out our online contact form and we’ll follow up shortly.