With the new year often comes resolutions to eat healthier and exercise.  Why? We want to feel better and be more resilient.  What about your business?  Here are two cybersecurity resolutions to help keep your business more resilient in 2018. 

Acknowledge the Real Threat

NO business or organization (or home, for that matter) is immune from the risk of a cyberattack.  Bad guys might be after your username and password (called credential theft) so they can try to log into other sites you use, like your bank.  Or, they might be after cold, hard cash they can trick someone into transferring voluntarily through a carefully-crafted but fake email (called phishing).

Acknowledging the threat seems obvious but it’s crucial.  Accept that your business faces a cyber risk, especially if any or all of these sounds familiar:

Working RemotelyAlmost all of us work remotely at one point or another.  According to the Staples Annual Workplace Survey, only 32% of employees spend all their time working in the office.  This means your staff is accessing their emails and your business data through public wi-fi (high risk), a wireless hotspot (safer), or a secure VPN over a secure network (ideal). 

Lack of Cybersecurity Awareness – Every person at the keyboard is the weakest link in cybersecurity, and every hacker knows that.  You can’t avoid what you don’t know, so cybersecurity training makes sense.   Your IT provider should be able to help.  Even basic training about creating strong passwords, how to identify suspicious emails, and how to surf the web more safely can create a “human firewall” to help stop a bad guy. 

No Response Plan – What happens if your network is compromised and client information gets out?  You need a plan for restoring your systems and notifying employees, customers, and other affected parties.  It doesn’t have to fill a binder, but it should provide a roadmap. 

Take Decisive Action

Once you acknowledge the threat, take definitive steps  to reinforce your cyber defense.  A burglar is more likely to break into a house that’s unlocked.  Similarly, a hacker is more likely to attack an open network than one with some virtual deadbolts.  Invest in the cybersecurity tools and training your business needs.

Ask the Right Questions – Learn the questions to ask to assess your risk and determine where you need to improve.  Consider talking with your insurance broker about cyber liability insurance.  A combination of tech tools and user training works best. 

Deploy the Right Tech Tools – Think about layers of swiss cheese, where one slice can overlap the holes in the next slice.  Tech tools are similar.  You probably have basic tools like anti-virus, anti-malware and a managed firewall already in place.  Figure out what’s missing and prioritize new layers to add.  You might need secure access for remote users, email encryption, two-factor authentication, or DNS blocking to help your users stay safer. 

Stay Ahead of Changes – New security tools are being developed every day.  Work with your IT team to be proactive about creating a budget so you can respond quickly to take advantage of new ways to protect your network.

Resolutions are easy to make, and hard to achieve.  Make 2018 the year for an improved cybersecurity in your business. 

If you’d like to know more about how CRU Solutions can help with cybersecurity, contact us.