Businesses today are highly vulnerable to cyber-attacks such as phishing, malware, ransomware, and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS). The effects of a severe cyber-attack can be devastating and can impact a business’s finances, reputation, operations, and valuation.
A strong cybersecurity strategy is the best defense against any cyber-attack. Cybersecurity refers to the protection of computer systems and networks from theft of or damage to their hardware, software, or electronic data, as well as from the disruption or misdirection of the services they provide.
How Can Cybersecurity Services Providers Protect Your Business from Risks?
Organizations across the globe are hiring cybersecurity service providers to safeguard themselves from potential threats. They offer a plethora of cybersecurity services to help businesses reduce risks. Here is a look at a few of the best practices they adopt.
- Use of Firewall
The firewall is the first line of defense in a cyber-attack. Cybersecurity service providers leverage it to protect a business, as well as its technology, intellectual property, and customers’ information from malicious traffic, malware, hackers, and more. It does so by restricting them from entering the business’s network.
A firewall works by analyzing each data packet that attempts to enter a business’s network. If the data is safe, the firewall will let it in. If it is harmful, the firewall will reject it.
In doing so, the firewall refers to the public lists of harmful websites. Further, it can identify and reject other malicious elements of web traffic. These include viruses and crypto lockers.
Apart from the standard external firewall, cybersecurity services also install internal firewalls in the business network to provide additional protection.
- Documented BYOD Policy
With BYOD becoming a popular workplace practice, businesses need to consider securing their systems and hardware from employee devices as well. Cybersecurity service providers ensure that business data is amply protected by giving them a strong and documented “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) policy.
A well-developed BYOD policy involves the following best practices:
- Mandating Strong and Unique Passwords
It requires password protection for all devices and accounts. A strong password should consist of at least three of the four types of characters: upper case, lower case, numbers, and symbols. The password length should be of a minimum of eight characters.
Businesses should also use multi-factor authentication (MFA) to facilitate robust security and better user identity protection. Multi-factor authentication is a security mechanism that requires an individual to provide two or more credentials to authenticate their identity. These credentials include one-time passwords, PIN, and biometrics authentication such as iris scan and fingerprint recognition.
- Defining Acceptable User Guidelines
Cybersecurity service providers create these guidelines to prevent a business from malware attacks and viruses. These guidelines specify third-party websites and applications a business’s employees can access from their devices. They also give employees an overview of the company-owned assets that they can access. Cybersecurity service providers also include an employee exit plan within the policy. The plan ensures that employees do not have access to critical business information once they leave the company.
- Incorporating BYOD Training Curriculum
Communicating a business’s BYOD policy correctly to their employees is important. Cybersecurity service providers conduct seminars and webinars to update and train a business’s employees on the policy.
- Regular Data Backup
Data disasters can strike at any time. From hardware failures and power outages to natural calamities such as storm and fire, all these can cause massive and unexpected data loss. Cybersecurity service providers regularly back-up a business’s data and allow it to stay operational. Here is how they do it.
- Automated Incremental Backups
Cybersecurity services providers conduct data backup every two-to-three hours, depending on the unique needs of a business.
- Continuous Cloud Backup
They also provide automatic and continuous cloud backup by storing the data in a remote server. They use encryption when transferring and storing business data, and provide multi-factor authentication for access. It helps them make the files and data instantly available in case of system failure, natural disaster, and power outages.
- Round-the-Clock Threat Monitoring
Cybersecurity services provider offer 24*7 network monitoring. This allows them to identify a threat before it infiltrates the business’s networks and mitigate it before any irreversible damage is done.
Even if a threat does enter a business’s system, they respond immediately and avoid any major data breach or downtime from taking place.
- Constant Software Updates
Businesses can protect themselves from evolving cybersecurity threats such as social engineering attacks and ransomware by keeping their system software updated. Old software is prone to zero-day exploits and attacks. The hackers can take advantage of the vulnerabilities and steal information by penetrating networks, causing severe damage. These vulnerabilities can be exploited through techniques like SQL injection and cross-site scripting.
Cybersecurity service providers monitor a business’s network and conduct vulnerability management processes to check for missing or outdated software patches and exposed vulnerabilities. Further, they apply the patches and updates wherever needed.
- Install Anti-Malware Software
Anti-malware software keeps a business’s system secure by protecting it from malware such as spyware, adware, and worms.
Businesses can hire cybersecurity service providers and leverage their expertise to get a layered security approach through anti-malware software. Cybersecurity service providers install anti-malware software in a business’s system which scans for threats using a malware database. The database consists of virus definitions which specify what specific malware and viruses do and how to identify them.
Cybersecurity service providers also perform regular malware database updates. This ensures that your business networks and systems are guarded against all the recently developed malware.
- Employee Cybersecurity Training
A business’s employees are its most important and the last line of defense. Cybersecurity service providers make sure that employees know about the threats they can face online and the major role they play in keeping a business safe. They give employees an overview of:
- Their computer rights and responsibilities
- Their network access and use
- Best online practices when using email, work computers, and devices
- Ways to identify phishing and fraudulent emails
- Instantly reporting any suspicious online activity
Managing cybersecurity is one of the most challenging responsibilities for any business. Keeping an organization safe from cyber threats requires diligence and effective IT cybersecurity strategies.
Cybersecurity service providers can safeguard businesses from malicious cyber activity by implementing the above-mentioned strategies, and more. From constant monitoring and data backup to employee training and facilitating firewall protection, cybersecurity service providers can help businesses do it all.
In a nutshell, cybersecurity service providers can find and fortify weak spots in a business’s IT infrastructure for optimal performance as well as business continuity.