Tips to jump-start cybersecurity preparedness

cybersecurity coronavirus

We are all facing new challenges in this pandemic, including the shift to and growth of remote-work. Meanwhile, we also have to contend with the increased volume of attempted cyberattacks. Despite the distraction of the pandemic and all the changes it has brought, it is more important than ever to remain attentive to cybersecurity.

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. To promote awareness, this article includes three tips to help you jump-start an audit of your cybersecurity preparedness.

Tip #1: Education. The human-factor is one of the largest vulnerabilities to any organization, and cybercriminals will attempt to exploit this vulnerability in every way possible. With a relatively reasonable level of upfront effort and cost, a simple educational program could provide a great return on investment as well-educated and well-trained employees can significantly reduce the risk of the financial and security nightmare caused by a cyberattack.

Tip #2: Response Policies. A majority of organizations surveyed in IBM’s and the Ponemon Institute’s 2020 Cost of Data Breach Report predicted that remote-work would make responding to a potential data breach more difficult. The IBM Report also found that incident response preparedness was the highest cost-saver for businesses.

Given the changes in how work is being done during the pandemic, now is a great time to review existing policies to update that reflect shifts in how your company operates.

Tip #3: Insurance. Let’s be honest: insurance is not a sexy topic, but … a well-structured cyber-insurance policy can be worth its weight in gold. The same IBM Report found that of the organizations with cyber-insurance, 51% used claims to cover the cost of third-party consulting and legal services, and 36% used claims to cover the cost of restitution to victims.

With the ever-increasing financial impacts of a cyberattack, insurance coverage can be a great tool to help mitigate the associated costs.

Now is a great time to review your company’s existing cyber-insurance policies and consider potential new policies to cover any gaps.

There is much to worry about in business these days and things have definitely not gotten easier with the onset of the pandemic. Cybersecurity issues can tend to get pushed to the back burner by other issues that at the time seem more urgent. However, given the potentially catastrophic outcome of a cyberattack, there is no better time than the present to refocus on cybersecurity.

This article appeared in the October 5, 2020, issue of The Journal Record. It is reproduced with permission from the publisher. © The Journal Record Publishing Co.