We are a full three months into 2017 and hopefully you’ve remained unscathed.
Have you had some things on your “to-do” list that just haven’t happened? Or maybe something didn’t work or produce as much of a “punch” as you were hoping it would? Maybe some things have served your company far better than you thought—like putting a company-wide security training in place paired with password reset or even knocking out a pen-test for the year.
Some questions you may start to ask yourself is if it’s smart to just stay on track with your original plan, or should you start looking to make bigger adjustments to maintain (or get back to) a healthy security posture.
Today, we will discuss some good times to revisit your cyber-security plan. Sometimes it’s not because things are broken that they need to be fixed, but in uncharted waters, you may find yourself sunk.
After a Breach
This may be a given, but that still makes it all the more important to discuss. After a breach – whether it be due to the antivirus program that wasn’t quite up to snuff or the computer game you’ve been playing that allowed in a bad actor to your system, we recommend you looking into current initiatives you have, or need, to help serve and protect your system moving forward.
Look into what went wrong and what’s needed to avoid breaches like that in the future. Oftentimes you, or your security team, will be asking yourself “why” or “how” attackers finagled their way into your network. What you can do is ask someone to pen test your system to hopefully find all of the gaps in protection that exist surrounding your sensitive data or use a vulnerability management solution to find the attack paths into your network.
With breaches that happen due to the software and applications on your system, you should be made aware of what happened and provided an update or release to help rectify the solution before you become part of the breach.
Things may have been going smoothly for you in the first three months of the year. Maybe they were fairly quiet and you used this time to *hopefully* get the other members of your company more on board and focused on simple security tasks. Bravo!
However, the next attack could be right around the corner. That’s what’s so interesting about cyber security—you never know when it’s going to happen but you always know something will happen. No one is invincible, no matter how quiet and smooth things seem to be going. Bad actors are constantly trying to break down barriers, cut through firewalls and reach sensitive material. It takes one second or a small lapse in judgment to do you in – and honestly, it could take nothing from you at all for them to reach your sensitive data.
Having someone with their eye on the status of your security posture and leading the charge on this is critical. The goal is to try and remain a step ahead of the bad guys, so keep the good guys equipped with enough time, energy and resources to help combat the risks you face daily. Take the start of each quarter as an opportunity to review your current status compared to where you hope to be in a reasonable time frame. Then, with that information in mind, adjust your focus to the mission critical areas and then add or subtract previously planned initiatives that are no long in line with your goal.
Starting at the beginning of the year – or end of the prior year – organizations evaluate the past in order to set new goals and objectives for the future. This is the time to look at what worked overall and what didn’t – or what’s now “outdated”. Document and track changes made in your security scope year over year in order to understand or adjust your initiatives track year over year progress towards your defining objectives or goals – all pointing towards securing your data, people and company. Cyber-security is constantly evolving and understanding the past may help direct your future.
Now, Off You Go
At the end of the day, your security initiatives should be top of mind with someone having continuous and comprehensive oversight. Being proactive when it comes to your security plan and remaining flexible and adaptable to what may come will serve you well. The security industry is one that you have to be able to react quickly and swiftly to navigate some potentially uncharted waters or new attack paths, bad actors are always seeking out.