Cybersecurity, Policies and Training

Three Things You Should Know If Your Organization Suffers a Data Breach

A data breach poses a severe threat to any company, whether it’s still developing or fairly established in the industry. Anyone can be the target of hackers—especially those companies who don’t take the necessary measures to protect their assets. Unfortunately, you can’t unscramble an egg: once a data breach happens, your company is compromised. However, you can take steps to minimize the damage and make sure it doesn’t happen again. Here are the three things you should know if your organization suffers a data breach.

Data Breach

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1.   Putting a Crisis Response Plan in Place Is the First Step

Being prepared for a breach is critical in successfully overcoming it. Detection of a breach takes 206 days on average, according to the 2017 Ponemon Cost of Data Breach Study. The longer it goes on, the higher the ultimate costs will be, so it’s imperative to react once you learn that you’ve been breached. If you don’t already have an incident response plan in place that lays out what needs to be done in case of a breach, you need to delegate team roles and responsibilities to deal with it.

To recover from a data breach, the team will need to contain and eliminate the threat. How they’ll do it depends on how the breach happened in the first place and what its source was.

If you don’t figure out how the breach happened and take some steps to prevent it in the future, hackers will strike again. Always keep activity logs from the time of the violation. You’ll need them for forensic analysis which will help determine the source of the attack.

2.    Even Better, Stop Phishing Emails from Breaching You in the First Place

Phishing is overwhelmingly the most prevalent cause of cyberattacks—responsible for 95% of post-breach damage. Anti-spam and anti-spoofing defenses can’t help much once a phishing email is in your employee’s inbox. Once that phish lands, it becomes the responsibility of the employee recipient to determine whether the suspicious email is legitimate or not.

All it takes is one click for the attacker to gain entry into your entire system and deploy its payload of malware. For a smart attacker, creating convincing fake domains is relatively straightforward. Additionally, if they do enough research on your company, they can come up with a phishing email that would fool even the most careful employee. That’s why it’s essential to choose cybersecurity solutions that act more like bodyguards—preventing entry—and less like the police force, trying to contain an attack that’s already infected your system.

3.    Invest in Cybersecurity Solutions that Stand Behind Their Claims 

Effective phishing protection requires a cybersecurity solution that preempts the attack; in other words stops the phish from landing in the inbox. Training your employees is desirable, but it doesn’t stop or disable the attack itself. Training only raises to 70% the odds that an employee will figure out the nature of a phishing email and deny the click. That leaves you at high risk that the remaining 30% of phish will succeed.

Gartner advises that technology-based anti-phishing defense is essential to combat cyberthreats effectively. Only that layered approach can keep your inbox free of phish and their malware, malicious web links, credential phishing hoaxes, and BEC.

As the risk of data breaches soars worldwide, the need for more effective protection is urgent. Invest in what works, and insist on a guarantee of performance: seek a cybersecurity company that agrees to forego payment unless they provide results.

Kim Del Fierro is the VP of Marketing for Area 1 Security.