Cybersecurity is no longer just a body of unrelated technologies meant to protect individuals and organizations from IT security breaches or attacks. Instead, it’s now one of the most critical concerns for enterprises of all shapes and sizes.
It is not the system or the hardware that makes us fall prey to cyberattacks. We humans are the weakest point in the context of cybersecurity and almost all attacks are due to human mistakes, faults or errors. Considering the frequency of attacks and the damage hackers are causing, predicting cyberattacks beforehand is almost impossible now. Being proactive is the only way to deal with these unpredictable attacks. So don’t wait for the problem to arise. Stay cautious and avoid them beforehand.
Irrespective of the field and domain, every organization and enterprise must develop strong security hygiene to stay safe and be prepared for any such cyberattack.
Here are the top IT security commandments that you need to obey:
IT security: Stay clean, stay updated
Almost everyone in the IT industry understands the importance of keeping your systems updated. However, there are still a lot of businesses and individuals who neglect the IT security updates. This, of course, opens the door for security disasters.
Staying updated is the first and foremost commandment of IT security. The more updated your systems are the lesser will be the vulnerabilities. Always keep your systems updated with the latest firmware upgrades. Also, it is very important to use just what is needed. In other words, only install and run software or services which are necessary for the running of your company.
Train your employees
Almost every company, even small ones, consists of multiple employees. And every employee can possibly put the company’s security at stake. Therefore, it is an absolute essential that all employees in your company be given IT security insights and training.
Often, employees are given knowledge-transfer sessions and training on ideal practices (the do’s) but are left out of the things that they are not supposed to do (the don’ts). This can lead to a huge disaster for the company. Therefore, all employees must not only be trained about what they have to do but also about what they are not supposed to do. Higher management and security analysts must take necessary steps to motivate and engage people to get habituated to good security practices.
With your employees, do not just focus on the organizational benefits of IT security. Also, try motivating them in a manner that helps them use these security essentials in their personal everyday lives as well. This will not only enable them to do things right but also teach them the importance of cybersecurity.
Create and maintain backups
If you don’t have a proper backup of all enterprise data and other configurations, you aren’t safe. Yes, even the most advanced or upgraded cybersecurity solutions cannot guarantee that you’re systems or company will remain safe from cyberattacks.
Although cyberattacks will invariably cause damage to the regular flow of operations and business of an enterprise, having backups can ease the process of recovering after a cyberattack. And having good backups is critical in the case of natural disasters or employee mistakes.
Classification of data is of equal importance and this helps in limiting backup costs. Not all data needs to be backed up. Data classification can be done based on multiple ways. One such effective way of classifying data is based on its confidentiality. And the level of security needed can also be configured based on data classification.
Secure your endpoints
In a collective work environment such as an enterprise, the risk of cyberattacks is directly proportional to its size. The more employees and devices in the company, the greater will be the chances and ways of being victimized by cyberattacks. Endpoints in an organization include all the devices that can be connected to the enterprise’s network. This includes routers, printers, laptops, mobiles, wearables — the list is long and getting longer each day. Endpoint security is often overlooked and is often not included in a company’s security policies.
Endpoints remain one of the weakest zones and most vulnerable targets to attackers. Endpoint security aims at blocking unauthorized access to the network through these endpoint devices. There are multiple ways in which these endpoints can be protected and preserved.
Choosing the right service vendors
Choosing service providers for an enterprise is very important. Be it the Internet service provider, cloud solutions, logistics support, security support, or any service for that matter, businesses need to cautiously select vendors to ensure better business continuity. There are certain aspects such as choosing the type of service that your business needs, checking the financials, analyzing the customer base, infrastructure, robustness of the services offered, and reach.
Apart from all these aforementioned aspects, an enterprise needs to understand each service-level agreement’s (SLA) terms and conditions well when choosing service providers.
Beware of scams
Scams are all over the Internet now. There is no definitive way to avoid every one of these always-evolving scams. The only possible way to stay safe is to avoid them. Each person in an organization must be trained to identify scam emails and phishing emails. Phishing has become a very popular means of cyberattacks these days for hackers and surprisingly many people keep falling prey to these traps.
An enterprise as a whole must “stay closed.” That means the entire network within an organization must be secured. Proper measures have to be taken to make sure that outsiders and other devices are restricted from the office network. If your company has a public/guest network, then it is critical to separate it from the organizational network to avoid security breaches. Seems obvious, but this unintended crossover of networks had happened to many companies with dire consequences.
In addition to all these security commandments, there are several other tips and security essentials that are of equal importance. These include active network monitoring, whitelisting/blacklisting devices based on their MAC IDs, and whitelisting/blacklisting of applications.
One of the most common IT security mistakes is proceeding with the default passwords or setting up very weak passwords that are easy to remember. Passwords play a vital role in IT security. Make sure all employees create and set up a secure password. Password manager software may be a good addition to your IT security toolbox.
It is not always the flaws in enterprise security systems or the skill of hackers that cause cyberattacks. Instead, it is often negligence and lack of understanding among users that open the door to cyberattacks. It is the duty of every person to take the responsibility and be cautious in terms of security. And it is the duty of IT security admins to make sure this is done.
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