Cyber-resilience is needed now more than ever. The process of global digitization is introducing a whole range of new risks and cyber threats. With advancements in software and hardware technologies, hackers have also made innovations to their infection tools such as viruses and malware. Typical security protocols such as antivirus and firewalls may not be enough to protect your firm anymore. Instead a long-term approach is needed to develop tools and policies that can avoid, endure and alleviate cyber attacks to ensure your firm delivers cyber-resilience in all of its activities.
What is Cyber-Resilience?
Cyber-resilience is the level of preparation an organization has made to safeguard against virtual threats and vulnerabilities. It is not event-specific but should be thought of as an organizational strategy. It takes a broad approach by encompassing cyber security, business continuity and best practices to avoid system failures due to cyber threats. Just like any other risk that a firm may evaluate in its overall strategy, cyber-resilience needs to be discussed with and embraced by management. The conversation needs to go beyond IT security and more towards introducing a mindset that can anticipate new risks that might affect your firm. The success lies in your firm’s ability to formulate an integrated approach that is driven by people, processes and technologies.
How can your firm embrace cyber-resilience?
- Long-term Planning and Spreading Awareness
The planning should revolve around anticipating cyber-attacks and to have steps in place to mitigate it. This also involves evaluating the potential for virtual breaches and to spread awareness of the dangers and risks. Key personnel in a firm need to get up to speed with the technology transformations around them and how those transformations could impact your business.
The level of preparedness is the single most important factor to ensure your IT systems run smoothly without compromising any of your data or your clients. Workflows need to be created that allow for greater readiness and less repetition to make the process more efficient and effective.
- Establish Regular Backups and Disaster Recovery
Regular backups can greatly reduce the risks associated with cyber-attacks. If your firm’s system is under attack from a virus or harmful malware, having regularly scheduled backups may prove vital to the defense. Automating regular backups allow users to roll back in time before the infection took place to ensure business continuity. This is easier to manage compared to manual backups and it is also more cost effective. Integrating encryption tools when backing up can further strengthen the security of your data backups. Backing up once per day is no longer viable. Firms should backup up multiple times per day for service in which data changes frequently.
- Improve, Monitor and Implement Routine Operations
Introducing guidelines and best practices when working in the workplace can go a long way in protecting your IT systems. Routine operations such as protecting passwords, encrypting data, emails and attachments, and securely managing client data can help organize and safeguard from future cyber threats. Further, establishing processes for confirming wire transfers, account changes and other banking related information with all stakeholders is key to avoiding unnecessary loss.
At Triella, we can nudge your firm in the right direction to ensure it is cyber resilient. Learn more about cyber-resilience here.
Faraz Mehmood is a Sales & Marketing Coordinator at Triella, a technology consulting company specializing in providing technology audits, planning advice, project management and other CIO-related services to small and medium sized firms. Faraz can be reached at 647.426.1004. For additional articles, go to www.triella.com/publications. Triella is a VMware Professional Partner, Microsoft Certified Partner, Citrix Solution Advisor – Silver, Dell Preferred Partner and a Authorized Worldox Reseller.
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