There are always a lot of buzzwords in the world of business. The one that is among the biggest and could be the most important is cybersecurity.
There’s a good reason for that. Businesses and government agencies are under threat every single minute. If there is a hack or data breach, the impact can be difficult to recover from.
There are security breaches in the news on a daily basis. The big names get the attention, but there are lessons that you can take to your business, even if it’s small.
Keep reading to find out what you can learn from the largest security breaches so far this year.
1. Employees Need to Be Trained
If you learn nothing from looking at cyberattacks, it’s that security breaches are caused inside the walls of your business.
Employees are responsible for the majority of cyberattacks and security breaches.
It’s not just clicking on an email that triggers a malware attack that you need to be worried about. You have contract workers and remote workers using their own devices that pose a security threat. In 2014, the US Office of Personnel Management was breached due to a third-party contractor.
Your job is to educate your employees on the latest risks and tell them what they can do to prevent attacks. You should also develop a clear and concise policy around IT security that everyone can follow.
2. Plan for When an Attack Occurs
The mindset among IT professionals has shifted from preventing security breaches in creating detection and response plan.
You have to assume that despite your best efforts to prevent an attack that your systems will experience a breach. There are so many things out of your control, the only thing in your control is how your company detects and responds to a breach.
Citrix experienced a data breach where hackers had access to data for six years. You can learn from this breach by having regular security audits as part of your detection plan.
You can also benefit from creating a crisis response team at your business. There are a lot of things that need to happen at once. Someone needs to contact the authorities, another person will need to manage PR, and someone will have to notify your customers and people affected by the security breach.
Of course, there has to be an IT team in place to manage your network, limit the damage, and get your systems online as soon as possible.
3. Compliance is a Good Thing
Laws and regulations surrounding data protection and privacy are changing often. You need to stay up to date with the latest regulations, such as GDPR to avoid major fines.
For example, with GDPR, you need to report a security breach to a supervisory authority within 72 hours. Marriott and British Airways were the first companies fined for data breach violations.
Another regulation is the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). You’re not required to report the breach but if a consumer files a complaint, the Attorney General has the right to pursue penalties. This law is scheduled to go into effect on January 1, 2020.
You still have time to get your business ready for CCPA, since enforcement won’t begin in full until July 2020. Check out these top tips to find out what you can do to get your business ready.
4. Keep Devices Secure
Another way your employees threaten your network security is by leaving devices behind. More and more work is done with a smartphone or tablet.
These devices can easily be forgotten at lunch for anyone to grab. Another risk is that employees using mobile devices are checking email and websites on the go.
They’re not that focused and may not discern if an email is a legitimate email or not. They will click on a phishing email without thinking.
If they use the device anywhere and everywhere, they can easily download apps that are infected with malware and not even know it.
You can secure these devices through having an IT policy, and limit the type of apps that someone can download to business devices.
5. Get Insured
There is a big question regarding security in the legal field. Who is to be held responsible in data breaches? Should your business be held responsible? Should your employees be held responsible?
Equifax and Yahoo had to settle class-action suits and pay significant damages. There is a huge gray area legally and you can bet that there will be laws passed to allow the public to hold someone accountable in court.
That’s like rubbing salt in a gaping wound. You want to protect yourself and your business from lawsuits and to cover the costs of the security breach.
One way to do that is to get cybersecurity insurance. There are various levels of coverage, depending on your policy. Typically, lost income for downtime, equipment losses, and ransomware losses are covered.
Learn from the Largest Security Breaches
Security breaches happen every day. That’s not going to stop anytime soon. If you’ve been fortunate enough to avoid a security breach at your organization, you can take the lessons from the largest breaches and apply them to your organization.
One key lesson is to educate your employees and develop a sound security policy for all stakeholders to follow. You also need to develop plans to detect and respond to data breaches. The more prepared you are for a security breach, the better you’ll be able to respond to the incident and limit the damage.
That can be enough to save your business. Do you want more tips for entrepreneurs? Check this site often to help you build a great business.