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Posted by A-Jay Orr

4 Business Security Projects to Complete Before Summer Ends

The costs associated with cybersecurity are staggering. We’re trillion per year by 2021! Time is of the essence for business leaders to get the proper security measures in place, so instead of writing off the lazy days of summer, why not use the next two months to build up your security walls. Here’s the intel you need to get your business up-to-speed and keep your data, customers, and company safe.talking about cybercrime damages hitting $6.

Conduct a Phishing Security Test

In the arms race that is cybersecurity, the most difficult variable to secure is human error, and that is exactly what phishing exploits. Criminals pose as perfectly likable or known entities to learn private information from unsuspecting employees or to trick employees into carrying out their criminal acts, like wire transfers to offshore accounts. The sender’s email may appear to be a known source and the instructions might even follow internal policy. But there are subtle ways to expose the true identity of these clever crooks.

Take a phishing security test for your business to gauge just how easy your workforce is to dupe. It’s a valuable way to create “teaching moments” and educate your frontline employees on what to look out for and how to report threats.

Vet and Hire a Virtual CIO

A Virtual CIO (or vCIO) is a neo-executive who thrives in the space between technology management and cybersecurity, with boardroom-level business acumen to boot. The scale and scope of the work can vary by contract and company, which helps make the services of a vCIO more scalable and affordable than hiring a full-time executive with a salary and benefits. Part of a vCIO’s responsibility is to stay up-to-date on today’s security trends and help your company make adjustments wherever necessary to keep your data and your company safe. Beyond making your business more secure and compliant, a vCIO can help you cut costs by making your existing infrastructure more efficient, eliminating redundancies, and ensuring that you aren’t being “sold” technology that does not align with your business goals.

Reassess Cybersecurity Policies & Procedures

The cybersecurity industry is as fluid and ever-changing as the technology that it protects. There is no shortage of ways to keep our digital assets safe. To that end, organizations must have an up-to-date Cybersecurity Policy in place, and ensure that all employees are familiar with it. Remember, as cybersecurity changes and technology becomes more advanced, your policy must also adapt. It is no longer acceptable to create a long-term plan. Your strategy must keep pace with the rate of change.

Cover the following cybersecurity-bases:
  • The importance of cybersecurity.
  • How to securely handle confidential information.
  • Rules for applying patches and updates (including a strict timeline)
  • What personal and company devices are to be secured and how.
  • Phishing and spam awareness and prevention guidelines.
  • Rules for password management.
  • Strict guidelines for remote employees.
  • Basic physical security expectations, such as locking unattended computers and keeping passwords private.
  • How to respond to a security threat or attack.
  • Disciplinary actions (should any policies or procedures be broken).

Develop a Breach Notification & Recovery Plan

Having a Breach Notification & Recovery Plan will ensure that you and your staff know exactly what actions to take in the event of a data breach. As you develop your action plan, answer the following questions:
  • What does your organization consider to be a data breach?
  • What information do you have that needs secured?
  • How will breaches be identified?
  • Who should be notified immediately?
  • What’s the chain of command?
  • When should authorities be alerted and when should the general public be addressed?
  • How will you retrieve lost data, or minimize the damage (e.g., redundancy and backup systems)
  • Who is responsible for investigating and reporting on the breach?

The risk of letting data slip-ups cause undue harm to your reputation and business far exceeds the cost of putting the proper securities in place. Bait and hook your employees with phish testing to turn your workforce into a human firewall. Ride the vCIO wave of the future, and give your employees a summer reading project by creating clear and comprehensive plans and procedures for cybersecurity and data breaches. Come fall, you will be well prepared for the busy year ahead!