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No matter what industry you’re in, data theft is a threat that all businesses face. This is especially true when it comes to protecting personal information. Cybercriminals constantly work on new ways to steal data and often target companies using outdated software. Taking preventative measures to ensure compliance and mitigate risk can save you from costly fines, penalties, lawsuits, bad press, and more.
Conduct a Risk Assessment
Conducting a risk assessment is the first step in any cyber security compliance process. This will identify any vulnerabilities that could be exploited by hackers and determine the impact of those vulnerabilities on your business.
Once you have identified your risks, you can create a plan for remediating them. This may involve implementing security updates or creating a firewall. It can also include educating employees on best practices.
Finally, consider the costs of implementing and maintaining your risk management processes. These can include monetary costs and the cost of lost productivity caused by addressing risks during normal business operations.
Create a Security Policy
Creating security policies isn’t just about checking a box. It’s about aligning business processes and culture with cyber security requirements to protect your organization from threats. Start with a framework for policy development, but customize the specifics to your company’s operations and culture. This will make the policies more meaningful to employees and more likely to be followed. Involve managers and supervisors in developing and reviewing the policies, so they have the authority to enforce them. This is critical in getting the most out of your security program and improving employee buy-in. It also ensures that the policies are being communicated well.
Cybersecurity training helps employees understand how to prevent breaches and comply with cybersecurity standards. This can include e-learning, workshops, Zoom calls, and events. These sessions should be held regularly rather than just once to help employees retain information. Your employees should also be trained on data protection protocol to understand how to protect propriety company data. This can include training on how to avoid phishing schemes and other common hacking tactics. Employees should also know the financial ramifications of data breaches and cyberattacks. These can include fines, lost business opportunities, and reputational damage. This will help them take more precautions in their work and personal lives.
Monitor Your Network
Monitoring your network is one of the most important steps in cyber security compliance. You can patch threats and vulnerabilities before they become full-blown attacks or breaches by continually identifying them.
Additionally, you should test your systems and processes regularly. New vulnerabilities are constantly discovered, and attackers exploit them to access sensitive data. Finally, you should also monitor your user accounts and passwords. You can prevent many cyber attacks by ensuring you have strong user authentication. You should also update user permissions for employees who leave the company or no longer need access to certain systems.
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Modern mobile devices run incredible software – from operating systems and applications to photo-retouching and sound-recording tools. Keeping this software updated is critical, but it can be difficult to keep up. Cybercriminals know that out-of-date software often has vulnerabilities that haven’t been patched, and they can exploit these holes to gain access to your system. Each upgrade changes the configuration of a piece of your stack, potentially breaking compliance. For this reason, it’s essential to implement a process that automatically updates software without disrupting other apps and devices. This will help you keep your stack in compliance and avoid costly breaches.
Backups are critical to protecting data from security breaches and other disasters. However, not all backup processes and systems are equal. It pays to regularly review your backup system and identify any weaknesses — either on your own or with an unbiased third party. Consider the 3-2-1 backup strategy, which requires keeping three copies of your data, including one on a different device or in the cloud. This will allow you to recover from a data loss event, even if your primary location is affected by a natural disaster or other incident.