Cyber attacks are a perilous threat to any organization.  Nowadays, it’s not a question of IF or WHEN you’ll experience a cyber attack, but WHERE.  As we recently shared with Security Roundtable, even the Olympics aren’t immune from cyberattacks.

Organizations continue to grapple with how to best prepare for and respond to cyber attacks.  According to the Wall Street Journal, Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) report that they are vastly under-equipped to deal with cyber attacks. And with stakes as high as $100,000 per hour for infrastructure failure in the Fortune 1000, your company can’t afford to go without a rapid response strategy.

Experts in the c-suite agree that best way to handle cyber attacks is through advance preparedness. Here are three strategies to prepare for an attack no matter WHEN or WHERE it happens:

  • Monitor the noise.  Assuming you have reliable security monitoring technology in place, use it to understand what readings are important and what may just be noise.  Since many software vendors monitor everything out there, sometimes the volume of readings can mask the notification of more serious problems. Make sure you understand what notifications refer to high-value targets so you can be ready to act earlier on in the attack lifecycle. One shocking stat from the 2017 Cost of Data Breach study by IBM found that US companies took an average of 206 days to detect a data breach. Not surprisingly, the longer it took to detect the breach, the more expensive it was for the organization.

According to M-Trends 2017 Cyber Security Report, 53 percent of breaches were found by an external source, including law enforcement. It’s important to have trusted relationships with external partners to be informed of threats as quickly as possible.  

  • Coordinate and communicate.  Having a coordinated plan is essential to helping with mitigation and recovery.  Make sure that employees know what their roles and responsibilities are during and after a cyber attack as well as the policies for internal and external communication around the issue.  Consistent messaging with regular updates is important to avoid confusion and to minimize reputational damage among customers and other stakeholders. 

Also take the time to practice and test out the response. Practice makes perfect and while you can never know exactly what an incident will throw your way, trying out different response scenarios will make everyone feel more prepared and confident for when an issue does arise.

  • Invest in a response tool.  While many companies have security technology and emergency mass notification systems in place, many have not invested in emergency coordination and response tools like ours.  Groupdolists was designed with the needs of CISOs and others responsible for the security of employees, assets, supply chain and reputation in mind.  Our SaaS technology streamlines response efforts to emergency situations like cybersecurity breaches by allowing the teams handling the crisis to quickly assign and keep track of tasks, post updates and coordinate seamlessly in real-time.  Since it’s a cloud-based platform, CISOs and their teams can access critical information at all times from their computer or mobile device, making it much easier for them to stay on top of the situation.

Ensuring your company’s cybersecurity is no easy feat. But thinking ahead and preparing now may help you neutralize threats later on. If you think Groupdolists can help make sure you’re ready to handle the growing threat of cyber attacks, please reach out to us to schedule a web demonstration or for more information.