The complexity and cost of cybersecurity crisis incidents are growing so much that it is no longer a security-related problem but has turned into a dangerous business problem. According to the cost of data breach report 2019 from Ponemon Institute and IBM Security. The average cost of a data breach has grown by 12% to reach $3.92 million in the last five years.
Despite all this, most businesses still lack an incident response plan. Businesses that have an incident response plan usually focus on short-term needs. This clearly shows the lack of preparation when it comes to handling the cybersecurity crisis. Even though many businesses invested heavily in cybersecurity training, this training does not always deliver desired results.
How can you enhance the cybersecurity preparedness of your organization in such a situation? In this article, you will learn about five ways to enhance your organization’s cyber crisis preparedness.
1. Get Senior Management Onboard
Before launching cybersecurity crisis readiness exercises, it is important to involve board members and C-suite executives. Once you have the green signal from top management, CIOs can divert their budgets to training team members and investing in the latest technologies. CIOs should also encourage team members to stay in the learning mode all the time.
Top managers should also push and encourage team members to actively participate in simulation exercises so they can prepare themselves for cybersecurity crises. When the key stakeholders start to take crisis preparedness measures seriously, the effects will not only trickle down to employees, but it will go a long way in reducing the impact of risk.
Julie Otsuka, CIO and Vice President of Colorado Community College Systems said, “I will speak with stakeholders one-on-one, get details from each of them, use that information when talking with others and start forming a proposal or solution.”
Sam McMakin, CIO of the American Chemistry Council said, “I have my directors manage relationships, independent of those I manage but also in support of IT better enabling the business. This gives business leaders the knowledge and context they need to resolve issues.”
2. Hold Your Employees Accountable
“Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility and it comes down to this: The more systems we secure, the more secure we all are.” — Jeh Johnson
Most businesses do not know how good or bad their employees are when it comes to managing a cybersecurity crisis. This is one of the biggest downsides of traditional seminars and training sessions. It does not tell the organization how capable its employees are. The more an organization knows about the information security skills of its employees, the better it can prepare for a future data breach or cybersecurity attack.
Technology and humans should work together to prevent a data breach. Technology cannot do anything if the people operating it has malicious designs. You need to make your employee realize the damage a single data breach and cyber-attack can do to your business’s reputation and finances. You need to tell them that cybersecurity is a shared responsibility and that every employee should play their role. Most importantly, you should clearly state that every employee is responsible for their actions.
3. Make Training Interesting
One of the main reasons why cybersecurity training fails to achieve its goals is because it is boring. To make cybersecurity training more engaging, incorporate elements of play into the learning process. In short, you should gamify the cybersecurity training process and foster human competitiveness. This allows you to make even dry cybersecurity training sessions and simulations more interesting for employees.
Gamifying cybersecurity simulations is also a great way to prepare for a real-world crisis. Let us say, you are simulating a cybersecurity attack that is targeting your Seattle dedicated servers. This will prepare your cybersecurity team to handle real-world attacks targeting your servers in a more efficient manner. Here are some of the ways you can use a VPS server.
- Change the SSH port
- Update your server software
- Deactivate network ports that are not in use
- Get rid of unwanted modules and packages
- Use stronger encryption
- Implement a strong password policy
Read More: What is a VPN, and how does it work?
4. Get Rid of Fear of Failure
The rapidly evolving threat landscape forces businesses to adapt quickly. Combine that with creative skillful and sophisticated hackers, you have the daunting challenge of securing critical business assets on your hands. The best way to do that is to improve the skill level of your crisis response teams slowly.
Unfortunately, corporate culture prevalent in most organizations sees failure as a sign of poor performance, discourages it or even worse, uses it as a method to sabotage the confidence of people. What they do not realize is that failure is an important part of building better individuals and teams. In fact, failure provides you with an opportunity to learn and improve. Conduct wash-up sessions after every failure and brief employees about what went wrong and how it can be improved.
One of the greatest basketball players of all time, Michael Jordan once said “I have missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I have been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
5. Simulate Real-World Scenarios
Simulating real-world scenarios is not easy but if you can do that it will go a long way in enhancing the cybersecurity readiness of your team. Some of the biggest advantages of simulating real-world scenarios are that it provides valuable feedback and offers organizational context to make it easy for them to apply it. With hackers becoming smarter and smarter with each passing day, it is important to constantly update the training to make sure that your cybersecurity team can defend against cybersecurity attacks and data breaches and keep malicious threat actors at bay.
Is your company ready to face its next cybersecurity crisis? How would you deal with it? How do you improve your company’s cyber crisis readiness? Let us know in the feedback.