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Cybersecurity Risk Management – 6 Best Practices

Cybersecurity Risk Management

Cybersecurity risk management and best practices are crucial to securing your organization’s cybersecurity based on identified risks and vulnerabilities. These risks must be prioritized and addressed systematically with the right technologies and security controls.

Here we look at the best practices for effective cybersecurity risk management.

1.     Audit Your IT & Cybersecurity Risk Solutions Infrastructure

How can you know what challenges to address without knowing what you have?

Auditing your IT environment is a little like a SWOT analysis. What are your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats? You must be clear on the assets you already have, what you need to protect most and address areas where critical security structures might be lacking.

Many components to consider, including data, networks, systems, technology, and even BYOT devices, can be troublesome if you do not have a pertinent cybersecurity risk management plan.

Your IT environment requires constant monitoring and prioritization as it’s never a “set and forget” operation, especially as you adopt new security measures and applicable technologies.

2.     Develop A Cybersecurity Risk Management and Best Practices Plan

It’s not uncommon for companies to have cybersecurity infrastructures but no documented plan to go along with it. In April 2020, CISOMAG said 60% of small businesses don’t have a cybersecurity policy. That should give you pause.

If you don’t have a documented cybersecurity risk management plan, even if you’re working with your team and asking them to implement security procedures, things aren’t being done the way you think they are.

In an incident, cybersecurity risk solutions rise and fall on plans and how well they’re being implemented across your organization.

3.     Take A Risk-Based Approach to Cybersecurity

Companies often adopt new cybersecurity risk management measures assuming that there is nothing more to do once their plan is implemented, and it’s “one and done” and “set and forget.” Unfortunately, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

It’s quite unrealistic to think that cyber risk can be eliminated wholesale. You can anticipate, plan, and reduce the risk of threats.

Cybersecurity risk management is an ongoing process where you identify, analyse, and evaluate risks, prioritize them, and implement strategies to mitigate risk with various controls.

The benefits are well worth the effort, though, as cybersecurity measures can help you minimize disruptions in your organization, reduce operational losses, help you manage your company’s reputation, and more.

4.     Offer Employee Training in Your Risk-Based Approach to Cyber Security

Your cybersecurity risk management program is woefully inadequate if it does not consider a human error. The weakest link in any cybersecurity strategy is humans.

Whether it’s opening suspicious emails, downloading risky files, using an unsecured network, or clicking on links, they shouldn’t; if your employees aren’t trained in cybersecurity, they won’t have any best practices to follow.

Many of these errors are avoidable if your employees are trained and know what to avoid and look out for.

5.     Adapt & Iterate Your Cybersecurity Risk Management Measures Ongoingly

Cybersecurity risks do not remain static. As technologies improve, hackers and cybercriminals also find new vulnerabilities, exploits, and methodologies that allow them to infiltrate your network, steal your login credentials, access your sensitive data, etc.

Likewise, businesses also change. You may implement new systems and technologies or update your business processes. As your company evolves, your security needs also change, and this is easy to miss, especially if you were expecting your cybersecurity infrastructure to last you for years to come.

Your processes must be reviewed ongoingly. Updates must be installed, and security gaps must be identified. If you do not continually adapt and iterate, your cybersecurity risk management and best practices will not save you in an incident.

6.     Implement Slowing Strategies

Slowing is also known as hardening. Some even call it defense-in-depth, a term adopted from the military. Whatever you call it, though, its essence of it remains the same.

The question is, how do you slow down your attackers? How can you impede their progress? And the best-case scenario, how can you prevent them entirely from achieving their ends?

Slowing hackers and cybercriminals allows you to catch them in the act and potentially even stop them dead in their tracks. And this is why monitoring is so crucial to your cybersecurity risk management plan too.

Although this should only be considered a starting point, here are some things you can do to slow down attackers:

● Automate software updates

● Use automated credential management, access controls, privileged access management (PAM), and similar tools

● Take advantage of multi-factor authentication

● Create a system recovery plan and test it

● Monitor and actively look for threats in your network with Indusface WAS

Conclusion

Cybersecurity risk management and best practices are essential. But there are times when they simply aren’t enough. Real threats exist, and companies do fall prey to cybersecurity attacks. Incident response plans often include little more than a contact person, which is simply inefficient. Cybersecurity risk management must be enforced continuously to be effective.