Four Ways to Improve Your Cyber Security

Of all the obstacles your organisation faces in an increasingly competitive and unpredictable environment, one of your top priorities should be to improve your cyber security. That’s largely down to the fact that new threats, such as ransomware attacks, are continuing to emerge. Even more worryingly, the potential consequences of security breaches are severe.

Remarkably, the cost of cybercrime looks set to hit $10.5 trillion annually by 2025¹. On top of these financial implications, organisations also need to ensure a proactive and robust cyber security strategy in order to protect themselves from:

As a result of all this, enhancing processes, improving security measures and overcoming cyber security challenges has never been more important to long term success. That’s why in this article we are going to look at four ways you can look to improve your cyber security.

Let’s get started.

One: Implement Effective Training Procedures

At the most basic level, an organisation can go a long way to protecting itself from the devastating consequences of cyber-attacks by ensuring that their staff are equipped with the knowledge, skills and experience they need to prevent a breach. This requires the implementation of comprehensive and effective training processes.

It’s crucial to remember that, due to the evolving nature of cyber threats that organisations face, training needs to be an ongoing process. If cyber security awareness training isn’t refreshed and reworked in line with new trends, breaches become far more likely to occur.

That’s why, as new cyber-attack trends and techniques continue to emerge, it’s essential to ensure that employees are working with accurate and up-to-date information as they try to avoid attacks with devastating consequences.

In terms of training, organisations also need to be sure to target their approach to focus on high-risk staff. For example, human resources and finance departments are far more likely to be the targets of an attack given the sensitive data they have access to, meaning that comprehensive training for those members of staff should be a priority.

Effective training is an essential part of optimising an organisation’s cyber security outcomes. However, delivering training in-house requires a significant amount of time, money and resources, which is why many organisations look to outside providers for help.

Two: Stay Up-to-Date with Best Practices

Training is key when looking to implement an effective cyber security strategy. However, it’s all for nothing unless organisations ensure that effective security practices are deployed across their teams once training is complete.

There are a variety of cyber security best practices that all organisations need to follow to minimise the threat posed by cybercriminals. These include:

  • Using strong passwords: Easily recognisable or weak passwords pose a serious security risk, hugely increasing the chances of a damaging data breach. Not only should employees be encouraged to have strong and hard to crack passwords, but they should also change them regularly to ensure compliance with best practices.
  • Having backups: Any vital information should always be copied, secured and stored immediately with effective passwords and encryptions. By doing this, organisations can minimise the damage and downtime caused by a breach and recover much more quickly.
  • Limiting access: Organisations should only give employees access to the data and information they need to carry out their daily tasks effectively. Simply put, the more people who have access to sensitive information, the more vulnerable that information is in the event of a breach.

While even following these and other best practices can’t necessarily ensure an organisation is completely safe from cyber-attacks, their implementation can go a long way to minimising threats.

Cyber security is about determining an organisation’s risk appetite and putting procedures in place to keep threats to a minimum. Implementing best practices like these is a cost-effective way to start to improve your cyber security.  

Three: Update Your Software Continually

Updating processes and providing comprehensive training is one thing, but organisations need to work with tools that provide the security they need at all times. Failure to do so only increases the chances of a successful attack.

Given the ever-evolving threat landscape that organisations have to contend with, using the latest tools and software is vital in order to maximise your security posture. Older versions of software are far easier for hackers to target successfully, significantly increasing the chances of a damaging breach.

This is especially true within the context of the increase in remote working observable in recent years. Now more than ever before, organisations face the prospect of having to ensure staff working at home are doing so safely and securely.

Implementing cutting-edge software and operating system security updates is, therefore, an essential component of a solid cyber security strategy. Any internet connection, whether that be in an office environment or remotely, is potentially vulnerable. That includes laptops, desktops and all mobile devices. 

Continually updating systems and applications with patches and antivirus enhancements contributes to an overall more comprehensive security posture. New features that fix bugs and ultimately upgrade security help to limit exposure and help keep organisations more secure.  

Four: Reconsider Your Approach

While there are various ways organisations can look to enhance their approach to cyber security by tweaking processes or implementing changes, becoming more resilient and minimising threats requires a strategic approach.

While many organisations might feel that increasing investment in their cyber security and technology estate is sufficient to keep them safe from cyber-attacks, this is far from reality. The best way to keep an organisation safe is to start by identifying and analysing:

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Areas of risk

It’s only after examining these areas closely that organisations can truly understand how they need to approach their cyber security efforts.

Every organisation is different, and priorities will inevitably vary and change over time. That’s why it’s crucial to understand where efforts need to be focused, how and where finite resources should be deployed, and tailor an approach accordingly.

While that might sound simple, getting started is often a challenge. A lack of in-house expertise and knowledge can make this difficult for organisations, which means getting the support you need is crucial to ensuring success.   

Prioritise, Review, Optimise and Improve Your Cyber Security Strategy with Six Degrees

Improving your organisation’s cyber security is a journey, not a destination. It requires agility, diligence and continuous process optimisation. The first step on that journey is analysing your cyber security maturity in order to identify correctly how resources should be allocated to ensure maximum resilience.

Here at Six Degrees, we help organisations across a range of industries in both the public and private sectors enhance their cyber security outcomes. All of our services are underpinned by our team’s vast knowledge and expertise, so you can be sure to benefit from cutting-edge solutions.

That all starts with our Cyber Security Maturity Calculator, which takes into account:

  • Compliance and accreditation
  • Digital transformation
  • Governance
  • Events, alerts and threat intelligence

Our auditing will ultimately help you understand whether you need to prioritise, review or optimise your cyber security resources. This results in:

  • A tailored analysis of your strategy that offers a foundation to build your defences on moving forward
  • The option to continue with a tailored conversation with one of our experts

So, if you’re ready to embark upon the journey towards a targeted and robust approach to cyber security, check out our Cyber Security Maturity Calculator today.

¹2022 Cyber security Almanac: 100 Facts, Figures, Predictions And Statistics

²The consequences of a cyber security breach

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