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Buyer beware – software programs or tools that claim the ability to conduct a risk assessment by scanning your network with little to no human interaction should raise concern!

These tools will generally do a nice job discovering vulnerabilities that exist in your technology environment, but vulnerabilities are not risks by default. 

Is you business familiar with vulnerability assessments and their benefits? If not, visit our website here to learn more about the benefits and how they can enhance your cybersecurity posture.

 

What is Needed

Risk requires the presence of a vulnerability PLUS the action of threat actor.

To illustrate this concept using an example from the tangible world, lets visualize a car. The car is parked, and the doors are unlocked. A premature conclusion would be to state that the doors being unlocked translates to risk. If you apply critical thought however, you will discover that the unlocked doors are simply a vulnerability that could be exploited.

You would need more information to determine actual risk. Is there anything valuable in the car? What is the crime rate associated with the place the car is parked? What would the impact be if someone gained access to the car? Who would attempt to gain access to the car? Are there other compensating controls in place, like a security camera? The same logic applies to the digital world.

The presence of vulnerabilities like unpatched computers or misconfigured devices will contribute to the likelihood of a risk event occurring, but it is shortsighted to say that vulnerabilities equal risk. That statement simply is not true.

A risk assessment requires critical thought to occur beyond the discovery of vulnerabilities by software tools. It requires critical thinking and the use of logic and reason. All of which made capable by the involvement of qualified human beings during the risk assessment process.

Relying on the arbitrary risk statements and scores created by software tools that simply discover vulnerabilities in your network, can lead to a false understanding of your actual risk profile. This can then easily lead to the wasteful allocations of resources – intended to reduce risk – but end up remediating a vulnerability instead.

 

What Happens After the Assessment?

Typically, a vulnerability assessment can be completed in a day or two. The results of a vulnerability assessment are documented and provided to the stakeholder complete with recommendations around remediating any weaknesses found.

Security shortcomings found during a vulnerability assessment can almost always be fixed. Many times, the fixes are very easy to accomplish. Roughly 60% of all reported cybersecurity breaches occurred because the bad actors exploited common vulnerabilities and exposures (CVE).

This means that roughly 60% of all reported cybersecurity breaches could have been prevented if the victim had simply conducted a vulnerability assessment and made small improvements to their cybersecurity posture that would have eliminated a substantial amount of risk. 

Interested in setting up a vulnerability assessment? Contact Databranch today at 716-373-4467 x115, [email protected] , or fill in the form below to set up a meeting with one of our experienced team members.

Not only will we help with the assessment, but our team of highly trained engineers will help your business prioritize based on your specific business needs.

Request your free security risk consultation with a Databranch Security Expert here:

 

Content was provided courtesy of CyberStone.

No business wants to suffer a data breach. But unfortunately, in today’s environment, it’s difficult to completely avoid them. Approximately 83% of organizations have experienced more than one data breach. (IBM Security 2022 Cost of a Data Breach Report)

These breaches hurt businesses in many ways. First, there is the immediate cost of remediating the breach. Then, there are the lost productivity costs. You can add lost business on top of that along with lost customer trust. A business could also have extensive legal costs associated with a breach.

Visit our website here to see what the cost of downtime would be for your business.

According to IBM Security’s report, the cost of a data breach climbed again in 2022. The global cost of one breach is now $4.35 million, up 2.6% from last year. If your business is in the U.S., the cost rises to $9.44 million. In Canada, the average data breach costs companies $5.64 million.

Costs for smaller companies tend to be a little lower. But breaches are often more devastating to SMBs. They don’t have the same resources that larger companies do to offset all those costs.

It’s estimated that 60% of small companies go out of business within six months of a cybersecurity breach.

Companies don’t need to resign themselves to the impending doom of a data breach. There are some proven tactics they can take to mitigate the costs. These cybersecurity practices can limit the damage of a cyberattack. 

All these findings come from the IBM Security report. They include hard facts on the benefits of bolstering your cybersecurity strategy.

 

Cybersecurity Tactics to Reduce the Impact of a Breach

 

Use a Hybrid Cloud Approach

Most organizations use the cloud for data storage and business processes. Researchers found that 45% of all data breaches happen in the cloud. But all cloud strategies are not created equally.

Breaches in the public cloud cost significantly more than those in a hybrid cloud. What is a hybrid cloud? It means that some data and processes are in a public cloud, and some are in a private cloud environment.

What some may find surprising is that using a hybrid cloud approach was also better than a private cloud.

 

Put in Place a Disaster Recovery Plan & Practice It

You don’t need to be a large enterprise to create an Disaster Recovery (DR) plan. The DR plan is a set of instructions for employees to follow should any number of cybersecurity incidents occur.

Along with this, it is the Business Continuity Solution put in place by the business to monitor backup processes, implement recovery objectives and restore your data to its former state.

Here is an example. In the case of ransomware, the first step should be disconnecting the infected device. DR plans improve the speed and effectiveness of a response in the face of a security crisis.

Having a practiced Disaster Recovery plan reduces the cost of a data breach by an average of $2.66 million per incident.

Need help setting up your Disaster Recovery plan? We’re ready to help you with a custom-built business continuity solution that meets the needs of your unique business. Give our experts a call at 716-373-4467 x115 or click here to get started.

 

Adopt a Zero Trust Security Approach

Zero trust is a collection of security protocols that work together to fortify a network. An example of a few of these are:

Approximately 79% of critical infrastructure organizations haven’t adopted zero trust. Doing so can significantly reduce data breach costs. Organizations that don’t deploy zero trust tactics pay about $1 million more per data breach. 

 

Use Tools with Security AI & Automation

Using the right security tools can make a big difference in the cost incurred during a data breach. Using tools that deploy security AI and automation brought the biggest cost savings.

Data breach expense lowered by 65.2% thanks to security AI and automation solutions. These types of solutions include tools like advanced threat protection (ATP). They can also include applications that hunt out threats and automate the response.

Here at Databranch, we use a number of automated remote monitoring tools that will inspect your system 24/7, 365 days a year to help prevent attacks from happening to your organization. Click here to learn more.

 

How to Get Started Improving Your Cyber Resilience

Many of these ways to lower data breach costs are simply best practices. You can get started by taking them one at a time and rolling out upgrades to your cybersecurity strategy.

Databranch will even help you put together a roadmap to achieve this in the most efficient way possible. Address the “low-hanging fruit” first. Then, move on to longer-term projects.

As an example, “low-hanging fruit” would be putting multi-factor authentication in place. It’s low-cost and easy to put in place. It also significantly reduces the risk of a cloud breach.

A longer-term project might be creating an incident response plan. Then, you would set up a schedule to have your team drill on the plan regularly. During those drills, you could work out any kinks.

 

Need Help Improving Your Security & Reducing Risk?

Working with Databranch can take the cybersecurity burden off your shoulders. Contact us today at 716-373-4467 x 115 or [email protected] to discuss your security needs.

 

Article used with permission from The Technology Press.

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