In today’s modern era, we have all become dependent on technology. Whether it is communicating with each other or storing data, everything happens online. While technology is making lives more comfortable, it also exposes people to security threats. In addition to monetary losses, data breaches create reputational risk for companies, raising questions on their credibility.
Unfortunately, cyberattacks have been happening for a while, and we can’t expect them to go away anytime, sooner or later.
With more industries integrating technology and automating workflows, the attacks are likely to become more sophisticated over time. Hackers won’t encrypt files to get a ransom, but they would threaten companies to leak their data.
Now, since confidentiality laws are stronger than ever, data breaches can land companies in legal trouble. Either way, companies fear the jeopardy to suffer from financial losses. So, any idea how you can escape these cyberattacks?
At times, companies cut back on tech initiatives to close doors for cyber threats, but it directly impacts business efficiency. Therefore, business leaders should try to make companies cyber resilient by efficiently managing cyber risks. After all, it is unrealistic for any organization to achieve faultless security or become immune to cyber threats.
Do you know how to mitigate cyber threats and implement cybersecurity measures? Understanding and overcoming cyberattacks has become an essential skill for business leaders. Hence, they have to develop a strong sense of cybersecurity protocols.
In order to learn the ropes, there are plenty of online courses on cybersecurity that can come in handy. It would take you through the complexities of the cyber landscape and develop the skills needed to analyze risks, giving a holistic understanding of cybersecurity.
If you wish to learn more about it, have a look below. Here we are giving an insight into what the future holds for cybersecurity in 2021.
1. Beware of Cyber Threats
Cybercriminals and hackers are becoming smarter every passing day. As businesses leverage new software and tools, they are also finding new ways to break into the systems. Before implementing cybersecurity measures, business leaders should learn about new cyber threats and then prepare strategies to mitigate the risk should it materialize.
Here are some recent examples of cyberattacks that businesses might experience in 2021.
• Automotive Hacking: Modern vehicles come with automated software, offering seamless connectivity to the drivers. Likewise, these vehicles also use Bluetooth and Wi-Fi technologies to communicate, opening them to vulnerabilities from hackers. These hackers can then gain control of the vehicle using a microphone, leading to inventory thefts.
• Targeted Ransomware: Since most companies rely on specific software to run operations, hackers use targeted ransomware to disrupt operations. In England, the ransomware attack on hospitals corrupted more than 70,000 medical devices.
• Insider Threats: Undoubtedly, human error will still be one of the fundamental reasons for a data breach. Any unintentional error or loophole can expose an entire company’s data and very often, this is the reason behind data leaks. Thus, leaders should create awareness amongst employees and limit access to confidential information.
2. Practice Strong Cyber Hygiene
Sometimes, employees perform actions that create a pathway for a cyberattack. They might click on a phishing email or install software from an unreliable source, giving hackers access to the company’s system.
Therefore, it is crucial to build strong security hygiene in an organization. Leaders could develop a detailed inventory configuration management system to monitor data sets and applications thoroughly. Likewise, they have to draft a robust patching strategy.
Begin by eliminating outdated applications since hackers can exploit old systems readily. In addition to maintaining an up-to-date patching status, include automated scans in the control systems. It would block unauthorized access into the systems, protecting critical systems against cyber threats.
3. Protect Mission-Critical Assets
When defining roles and policies for every employee in an organization, leaders should focus on the ‘principle of least-privileged access’ which means limiting employees’ access to data and information, using privileged identity management. After all, a project engineer has nothing to do with financial information, nor a finance manager needs to know production codes. Hence, build a strong identity and access management system across the organization.
You can use biometric scanning or facial recognition systems to access confidential information. Most importantly, make sure to integrate alert and audit mechanisms with access systems as this will inform management regarding changes in organizational requirements because the level of user access required will change over time.
For example, employees may get promoted which means they would need access to sensitive data to perform tasks. Also, remember to terminate the access right of any employee that departs from the company as soon as possible..
4. Secure Supply Chain
Surprisingly, the hackers will proactively work to recognize and exploit the weakest link in the value chain. Unfortunately, most companies fail to assess their hardware and software suppliers. At the same time, they often fail to resolve bugs and configuration issues in applications, opening doors to cyber risks.
As a result, the security team has to adopt novel techniques to bridge the security gaps in systems which means that organizations have to go beyond the use of conventional firewalls and antivirus software.
Business leaders also have to follow a zero-trust approach to build a secure corporate network which controls data assets while improving the visibility of its usage in the business ecosystem.
Similarly, it conducts due diligence on the backgrounds of vendors who have access to companies’ systems. You can also review the existing contract and decipher suppliers’ cybersecurity practices. It would prioritize security across different channels, reducing the number of vulnerabilities.
5. Develop a Crisis Management Plan
The increasing likelihood of cyberattacks demands a robust management plan in 2021. After all, analyzing and mitigating risk won’t be enough to manage the impending security crisis. Organizations have to concentrate on preventing and defending against cyberattacks. If you are foreign to the world of cybersecurity, have a look below. Here are some tips for creating a crisis management plan.
• Develop a cross-functional team to avoid overlapping business operations.
• Prepare a plan covering the entire spectrum of company activity, ranging from case management to internal communication.
• Consider alternative communication paths since the conventional mechanism won’t be available during a cyberattack.
• Keep hard copies of procedures and documentation as a back-up.
• Create emergency firewalls that you can install during a cyberattack to limit the damage.
• Lastly, focus on the range and objective of potential attacks. Think from a hacker’s viewpoint to see how they can break into the systems.
The role of cybersecurity is changing rapidly. Previously, antivirus software was enough to eliminate threats but not anymore. Business leaders have to invest in robust security measures, understand cyberattacks, and develop an effective crisis management plan.
Similarly, they have to implement better controls to create a resilient business infrastructure which would help the business achieve smarter, faster, and more connected futures, driving growth.