You wake up to another day of immense revenue–generating potential at your organization. But what would happen if you woke up to a ransomware attack instead?
Research shows that nine out of 10 companies in 2022 fell victim to cybercrime. Part of the reason for this is the increase in remote work. Seventy-nine percent of businesses acknowledged that telecommuting has negatively impacted their cybersecurity systems.
Are you unsure that your business and client data are secure? You should invest in cybersecurity services. Here’s a rundown on nine strategies to reduce risk with cybersecurity services.
Let’s dig in!
1. Conduct a Risk Assessment
One of the most important steps to take to reduce your cybersecurity risk is to conduct a security risk assessment. This is a step a cybersecurity service provider can help with.
A security risk assessment will help you to uncover possible security control gaps. Through this type of assessment, you can learn about which assets need more protecting. As part of this process, you’ll be able to determine which vulnerabilities require remediation first.
Your assessment will also teach you more about the specific security controls you currently have in place.
All in all, through a thorough assessment, you’ll get a better picture of your business’s cybersecurity posture. With this information, you can more easily tackle vulnerable areas that may be exploited in the future.
Note that risk assessments can help organizations in any industry, including the following:
- Financial services
- Health care
These industries also include the legal field.
2. Create a Plan for Responding to Security Incidents
Let’s say you experience a data breach. It’s critical that everybody in your organization knows what steps to take. In this way, you’ll immediately have every vital resource in place to respond to the incident.
For this reason, you should develop a plan for responding to incidents. This response plan should spell out the roles of both non-technical staff and IT security staff in the event of an incident.
Threats can have many origins. In addition, they are constantly becoming more sophisticated. This means it is becoming more difficult to stop data breaches.
Fortunately, planning can help organizations to proactively remain prepared for the worst. The more prepared they are, the more efficiently and quickly they can remediate cybersecurity issues.
3. Establish Access Controls for Your Network
Another way to mitigate cybersecurity risks is to establish access controls for your network. This is particularly important for mitigating insider threat risks.
Many companies today are prioritizing zero-trust security systems. These systems help companies to assess user access depending on their various users’ unique job functions. In this way, they can minimize the impact and likelihood of attacks and threats.
These threats may occur as a result of employee negligence, for example. They might also happen due to employees’ lack of understanding of security best practices.
With a zero-trust system, you can increase your chances of properly securing your customer and corporate data.
4. Examine Your Organization’s Physical Security
You can also reduce your security risks by examining your company’s physical security assets. Again, a managed IT service provider can help you with this.
It’s not enough to manage only your company’s digital cybersecurity piece. You should also protect your company’s physical premises.
The risk assessment you conduct, as we mentioned earlier, should show you how safe your infrastructure is from data breaches. With this information, you can determine if your protection and backup policies are sound enough.
5. Implement Antivirus Software and Firewalls
You should also implement two vital cybersecurity solutions to protect your data. These are antivirus software and firewalls. Such technological defenses provide extra barriers for your network and computers.
Firewalls serve as buffers between your network and people outside of your organization. This will give your organization more control over outgoing and incoming traffic.
In the same way, antivirus software will search your network and devices. It will then show you any malicious threats that could impact your system.
6. Reduce Your Company’s Attack Surface
You can also minimize your company’s security risks by focusing on decreasing your business’s attack surface.
The term “attack surface” is used to describe an organization’s entry points and vulnerability areas. Cybercriminals will target your attack surface. In this way, they can access your company’s sensitive data and information.
For instance, a cybercriminal may use your attack surface to access your employees. They can do the same with your software or web applications.
Minimizing your organization’s attack surface involves assessing three types of attack surfaces. These include your physical, digital, and social engineering surfaces.
Three Types of Attack Surfaces
The physical surface is any business asset that cybercriminals may exploit if they’re able to physically access your building or premises.
The digital surface is any asset that cybercriminals can access through the internet. Cybercriminals may also access your digital surface outside of a firewall.
This type of attack surface includes known assets, like corporate servers. It also includes unknown assets, like applications that may impersonate your organization.
Do you think your company’s digital attack surface will expand in the future? It is especially critical that you pinpoint and manage the risk that may be hidden across the company’s digital assets. You cannot secure the assets you cannot see.
Ideally, you should use analytics to learn more about your digital assets in each business unit and geographical location.
Also, let’s say you have different cloud providers. A cybersecurity service provider can help you to identify the unique risks associated with each one.
Finally, the social engineering surface includes your employees. Unfortunately, cybercriminals often try to manipulate workers. In this way, they can get workers to release confidential data and information about your organization.
By examining these surfaces, you’ll get a better understanding of your threat landscape. You’ll also learn more about your security posture.
This will help you to identify vulnerabilities. You can then reduce them throughout your organization.
As brand-new threats crop up, instant alerts will help you to prioritize your remediation efforts.
7. Develop a Schedule for Managing Patches
Many providers of software consistently release patches. Unfortunately, cybercriminals today know this. As a result, they can rapidly exploit unpatched vulnerabilities.
In light of this, you should create a schedule for managing your release patches. This will aid your IT security staff in staying ahead of attackers.
8. Embrace Continuous Monitoring with Your Vendors and Organization Overall
Third-party risks are a main cause of data breaches. Fortunately, a cybersecurity service provider can help you to assess and monitor vendors to keep your IT system secure.
Common strategies for assessing a supplier’s security posture provide insights into cybersecurity risk. However, they do this for only certain points in time. In addition, these methods can be subjective, expensive, and time consuming.
In light of this, it is critical that you continuously monitor your vendors. This will help you to expose any risks in your organization’s vendor portfolio.
Note that continuous monitoring should be done at each stage of your vendor relationship. These stages include onboarding and concluding the contract.
Also, keep in mind that continuous monitoring should be performed throughout your company, not just with your vendors. This will allow you to actively detect threats in real time. You can then determine the best path for remediating these threats.
Again, a cybersecurity company can assist you in continuously monitoring your business. The company can also help you to create a plan for fixing any security problems that arise.
9. Keep Your Organization’s Systems Updated
Finally, a cybersecurity service provider can help you to keep your company’s systems updated to reduce your security risk.
If you don’t update your systems, you increase your chances of falling victim to ransomware. That’s because updates play an important role in fixing previously unknown vulnerabilities. Cybercriminals can exploit these bugs to access your data.
We mentioned earlier about protecting your organization’s attack surface. By keeping your software updated, you will be able to minimize the organization’s attack surface repeatedly in the years ahead.
How We Can Help with Our Cybersecurity Services
Are you interested in reducing your security risk with the help of cybersecurity services? You should first conduct a risk assessment. You can then engage in incident response planning.
Part of your strategy should include minimizing your company’s attack service. It should also include continuously monitoring your system.
At NTG, we take pride in offering cybersecurity and information management solutions in Tampa, Florida. We can help you to maintain a responsive and reliable IT structure. We’ll help you no matter what industry you operate in.
Get in touch with us to learn more about our services. Schedule a free consultation today!