6 Steps to Improving Your Company’s Cybersecurity in 2022
The New Year is in full swing and that means many people and companies are still holding to their resolutions for 2022. You may be planning to start your fitness journey, focusing on your mental health, or planning to travel more, but there’s one resolution that should be at the top of everyone’s list — improving your cybersecurity posture. Businesses continue to adopt newer and more complex technologies and are required to handle even more customer data every day, often without the knowledge or support needed to protect it all. No one knows this better than the cybercriminals – they are ever vigilant, looking for new ways to compromise targets by exploiting vulnerabilities in system configurations or security practices and releasing malware (ransomware) or worse, stealing your data. With no signs of these attacks stopping anytime soon (if ever), now is the time to strengthen your cybersecurity procedures and practices to protect your company.
Based on our 10 years of helping companies recover from malicious cyber-attacks, we recommend that you consider these six practices to improve your company’s cybersecurity posture in 2022.
1. Update Software
No one is a stranger to those pop-up windows telling you that there is an update available. You might be tempted to hit the “remind me later” button, but we advise you to not put off any software updates. Software updates help to patch security flaws as well as protect your data. Updates are especially critical for your anti-virus program to protect your systems. Reviewing how you manage routine patches and updates may just save you from a breach. If routine manual processes aren’t for you, then enable the automatic update feature of your critical software.
2. Use Multi-Factor Authentication
A cyber criminal can not access your information if they can not access your system or network. Identity management using multi-factor authentication (MFA) is the guard at your castle gates. Find and use an MFA program that fits your configuration and budget as soon as possible.
3. Back Up Your Data
It sounds silly to mention this one as something new, but many businesses we have assisted have did not have current (key word) backups of their data. You need to have a habit and policy of making and maintaining backups of important data. In the event of a breach, having current backups will save you time and money. First identify what you need to keep, then it is a good idea to keep multiple copies of the backup both locally (so it’s available for fast, frequent recoveries) and in the cloud (to guarantee you have everything if a fire, flood, or disaster hits your facilities). Your backups will help protect you and enable your company to quickly recover from human errors, hardware failures, virus attacks, power failures, and natural disasters.
4. Conduct Cybersecurity Awareness Training
You can purchase all the electronic tools out there to protect your systems, but the actual users are always going to be the weakest link, unless they are trained and stick to the training. Even with training, people are going to make because it’s just part of being human. The errors run the gambit of people being tricked into giving up sensitive information through phishing, or not updating their systems or applications (if not handled centrally) or using weak or the same password for their accounts. These errors can result in disaster for your company, so it’s imperative to educate employees on how to be more security conscious. Your company needs to develop a security culture based on training to lower the risk of a breach and the loss of your company or customer data. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) provides several resources and materials to keep your business cyber secure.
5. Prepare an Incident Response Plan
Just like the requirement for you to have a fire escape plan for your office building, you need to have an incident response plan in the event you are breached, or you believe you have been breached. A comprehensive written plan developed and reviewed by all the key stakeholders in your company is essential. The plan should include a policy review, identify the incident response team, outline standard investigation procedures and processes, and provide a skeleton communications plan with generic examples of messages. Everyone needs to know and agree to their responsibilities in the event of a breach, well before it happens. Once your plan is done, you need to test it and then modify it based on what worked and anything that did not.
6. Conduct a Penetration Test
An annual penetration test (pen test) is the best way to determine if your system or network has cyber vulnerabilities. Many certifications and cyber insurance policies require businesses to conduct annual pen tests (look in the fine print). There are many types of pen tests, from simple external automated vulnerability scanning web tools the only look at the surface to in-depth efforts the examine all the layers of your cybersecurity protection efforts and lead by Certified Ethical Hackers (CEH). Any vulnerabilities identified during the pen test should be immediately addressed to protect your systems and network.
How We Can Help
Our mission at Sera-Brynn is to be your cybersecurity partner and penetration testing is a one of our strongest tools to help a client prevent data breaches and the resulting financial losses. Unlike other firms that rely on automated scanning, we tailor each pen test engagement to our client’s individual situation and needs. Our Senior Cybersecurity Engineers provide an in-depth analysis of the client’s system/network and based on their years of experience, provide details on vulnerabilities that are often overlooked. As your cybersecurity partner, we also offer:
- Technical services to help secure networks
- Advisory services to help develop telework policies and procedures
- Endpoint protection technology
- Incident response services to get you back online
Sera-Brynn takes the extra steps to become your trusted cybersecurity partner. We will not stand on the sidelines and wait for something to happen to your company; we are ready to help now. Contact us today.
Founded in 2011 by former members of the U.S. intelligence community, Sera-Brynn partners with some of the world’s most respected and recognized brands to help them secure their infrastructure and meet cybersecurity compliance requirements. Sera-Brynn has invested in our capabilities and is proud to be only one of seven companies worldwide that hold certifications as both a Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) Third Party Assessment Organization (3PAO) and a Payment Card Industry (PCI) Qualified Security Assessor (QSA). We use these and other individual advanced certifications (CISSP, CEH, i.e.) to help companies develop cybersecurity programs to meet Federal and Commercial Compliance Requirements (800-171, DFARS 7012, CMMC). Our experts, with their specialized comprehensive experience, will solve your most complex cyber challenges.
Contact us at 1-757-243-1257 or email@example.com