Today, companies vary a great deal in the cyber security protections they have in place.
Some have very sophisticated protections in place, while others have very poor protections to none at all. These gaps have materialized in attacks: in 2017, 47% of small businesses stated that they suffered from at least one cyber attack.
To those intending to make a start (which is a must), they must have the following measures:
- User Training
- Multifactor Authentication
- Regulatory Vulnerability Scans
Below, I will discuss each of these cyber security risk management strategies in detail.
End-user training isn’t a very high-tech nor expensive solution, yet it can have a serious impact.
Over 40% of cyber security breaches are a result of employee negligence.
Typically, end-users will quickly move through the internet and can easily click on a dangerous link, which could download and install malware. These links may masquerade as addresses of large institutions, such as banks, as a means to lure unwitting users to click on them.
These links may also be emails, such as an attacker impersonating your company CEO.
You can significantly reduce the risk of people clicking on such links through end-user training.
At Power Consulting, our security awareness training and testing are simple, effective, and non -disruptive to the team. In fact, our process generally requires 15 minutes per person, and we’ll continue to rest and retrain users on managing dangerous links.
We use KnowBe4 software to conduct training for phishing and ongoing testing for our clients.
After the initial training phase, we send out false phishing emails to trainees, luring them to click on those fraudulent links. We track the responses, and in turn, re-conduct the training again by resending more false phishing emails until the team has a satisfactory score.
For specific important systems, a higher level of security is required.
Different companies value their data differently, but most wish to increase the security of their accounting, banking, CRM and other critical systems.
A single password is not sufficient. Passwords are often insecure in that they can be hacked (or guessed) and may even be shared between users.
But by implementing Multifactor Authentication (MFA) software, most of the insecurities and risks of passwords are overcome.
With MFA, even if all your passwords are known by hackers, those hackers will not be able to log into your critical systems unless they also possess the second factor of authentication, e.g., the user’s cell phone.
More on Protecting Your Small Business from Hackers:
- 10 Cyber Security Gaps You Probably Didn’t Even Notice
- What is Cyber Security Training and How Does It Improve IT Security?
- How Your Employees are Your Biggest Cyber Security Risk
MFA is a security schema — or protocol — that raises the requirements for user validation to a second factor of validation for each login.
There are many software programs that enable and manage the MFA protocols, procedures, and conditions for login (e.g., geographical location).
MFA software may send an email or text to the user to provide the additional information needed to complete the login.
When you get a text from your bank, Google or Apple (e.g., when you change your password), it is usually a number or code to finish the login – this is the second factor of authentication.
MFA is also a Compliance Requirement
Some businesses must use MFA to comply with their industry’s security standards, particularly when providing access to certain kinds of data.
Of course, increased security means increased costs. These include hard costs, like software licenses. There are also implementation costs, support costs (help desk), management costs (as the network, data, systems, and users change)
You must also pay attention to usability costs. it takes a little bit more time and effort to log in using MFA– so users generally don’t love it.
However, MFA is not very expensive.
In the end, we put our money where our mouth is by protecting all of our critical data.
With MFA, I as a business owner can say I sleep better at night knowing these systems are that much more secure. To determine whether MFA makes sense for improving the security of your company’s assets, give Power Consulting a call.
Cyber Risks Can Shut Your Company Down
We’ll Help You Prevent That
Businesses that have not conducted a true vulnerability scan will be in for a few surprises.
Very few businesses grow with a formal plan for the user and system security. Instead, they evolve organically, and a lot of the older, looser practices can carry forward, such as:
- There may be users with access privileges who haven’t logged in for years!
- Malware may have taken up residence on your systems, and is waiting
and watching for an assigned interval, before it is deployed.
Hackers rarely plunder or do damage their first visit. Rather, it is more common for hackers to penetrate and recruit systems to visit at a later time.
That’s why regular security updates and vulnerability scans are needed.
Is your server and desktop software up to date? If not, they may be vulnerable to attacks. As new system software is released (usually to fix security bugs), hackers find new holes and the cycle repeats itself.
Plus, users may unwittingly click on dangerous links. It can happen, despite the best intentions and plans.
New software, new hacks, new defenses, and on and on it goes.
It never ends!
That’s why there are no silver bullets to cyber security risk management. Instead, it’s a tedious and continually ongoing management process.
Which is why regular vulnerability scans are needed. Despite your best efforts at defense, an unknown malware may have found its way past your firewall.
The most important scan is your very first. It sets a baseline clarifying where your business is from a security standpoint and where you want it to be.
After the initial scan, we immediately create a vulnerability report with a prioritized list of fixes, updates, and security policy/procedure changes.
At Power Consulting, we cover every part of your cyber security needs so that you’re both protected from cyber threats and free of worrying about the technical headaches involved with the process. You just need to worry about running your business. Get a FREE quote today!