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The Three Pillars Of An Effective Cybersecurity Plan

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Cybersecurity isn’t simply a matter of installing a firewall and calling it a day. It’s an ongoing process. Go in without a plan and you’ll certainly regret it. Here’s how you can ensure that when you devise your cybersecurity approach you do things right. 

Too often I see businesses taking a laissez-faire approach to cybersecurity. They install a firewall, maybe an antivirus solution, and then call it a day. The notion that they might suffer a data breach - that a criminal would even wantto target them - never even enters their mind.

Obviously criminals lovethat. 

The truth is cybersecurity isn’t something you can simply ignore. It’s an ongoing thing. And if you’re going to keep your corporate assets and customer data safe - both from criminals and the well-meaning ignorance of your own employees - you need a plan. 

Here’s where to start. 

Secure Infrastructure

Security by design is a concept you need to familiarize yourself with. Your networks should be designed in such a way that any suspicious devices can be immediately air-gapped - if indeed they can connect at all. All systems and software should be patched the moment updates become available, and access to critical assets should be strictly controlled.

Beyond making sure your infrastructure is secure, you’ll also need the proper tools. Security investments such as EFSS, network monitoring solutions, authentication platforms, and AI-driven security tools all fall under this umbrella. Depending on your budget, you should invest in the following:

  • Threat detection and mitigation

  • Standards enforcement

  • Device and endpoint management

  • Lifecycle management

  • File sharing and security

  • Antimalware for both email and servers

  • Email DLP

  • Backup

Processes

How are cyber-threats documented within your organization? How will employees respond to an incident such as a data breach or a critical system failure? What should an employee do in the event of a lost or stolen device?

These are questions you need to answer, and which need to be accounted for with your security processes. You need to know what risks your business faces, and how to address those risks. At the minimum, you should implement policies for the following: 

  • Acceptable use

  • Access to corporate assets, both digital and physical

  • Lifecycle management for all software and hardware

  • Change management

  • Information security

  • Remote access

  • Email and communication

  • Crisis response, disaster recovery, and business continuity

  • Passwords

  • Onboarding of new hardware or software

And most importantly, these policies all need to evolve alongside the cybersecurity landscape. 

People

Your employees are your most valuable asset, but they are also your most significant security risk. To mitigate this, you need strong training programs in place to ensure your staff knows, understands, and follows protocol. Beyond that, you need to work with end-users when developing and deploying security solutions.

The days when IT was the sole gatekeeper of what an employee could do on the corporate network are far behind us. It is imperative that, when developing security processes or deploying new infrastructure, you account for the needs of your users. Security solutions should be created or chosen with user enablement in mind - they should make an employee’s life easier, or at least be unobtrusive enough that they do not interrupt workflows. 

A Firm Foundation

Ultimately, your goal is to keep your business safe. With strong processes, a people-first approach, and the right infrastructure, you’ll be set. Good luck!

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Author

Max Emelianov

Max Emelianov started HostForWeb in 2001. In his role as HostForWeb’s CEO, he focuses on teamwork and providing the best support for his customers while delivering cutting-edge web hosting services.

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