Here is a shocking stat for you. It’s estimated that cyber attacks account for approximately $300 Billion in losses each year and that close to 1 in 3 attacks target small and midsized businesses (SMBs).
A strategic approach to secure SMBs from cybercrime is essential.
The National Institute of Standards and Technologies (NIST) has developed a set of guidelines that can be used to create a solid security plan.
The NIST developed this with the assistance of professional companies in the industry including SIFMA and it has been specifically designed to provide an overview of cybersecurity from a business point of view in a manner that makes it easy for technical and non-technical people to discuss.
The NIST guidelines consists of five categories which make it easier for you to understand cybersecurity and implement the necessary security measures to ensure your data is kept secure. The five categories are as follows:
Identification – Identifying data which is at risk, assessing the threat imposed to existing data as well as your existing infrastructure and understanding the network and all the devices which are connected to the network.
Protection – The importance of limiting access to specific users and devices. Educating users on the risks involved with cybercrimes and how to manage cybersecurity to minimize the risk, using programs which help to secure your information and services.
The programs which help to secure your data include encryption, password protection, firewalls and backing up your information regularly.
Detection – The importance of monitoring the network to detect any threats early so that the damage can be contained, evaluating the threat and understanding the impact it can have on your business as well as looking for abnormalities on the network such as unauthorized access or abnormal behavior from a user.
Response – Responding to abnormalities and attacks is important so that you can prevent further damage. It is also important to discuss the response with executive personnel to evaluate the plan for response and improve on the plan for response. It is also important to notify the authorities.
Recovery – An efficient recovery plan will allow you to correct the damage that was caused quickly so that you can resume your regular business practices quickly. A good recovery system also enables you to manage your relationships with your clients and business associates effectively. Efficient systems administrators and network administrators will implement the recovery plan as soon as they are aware of the cybercrime which will begin the restoration process. Keeping your recovery plan up to date and ensuring that everyone is aware of each step and their roles will help to make the recovery process complete smoothly.
The NIST guidelines provide an overview of what every SMB needs to implement so that their information is kept safe.
Cybersecurity is important.
The loss or misuse of information is one of the quickest ways to cripple the business.
As a SMB it is imperative that you consider implementing each of the five steps detailed above. Pay attention to your cybersecurity or else you could be devastated by the damage that just one incident of cybercrime can cause.