By Austin Page
Today, technology and digitization are integral to our lives and business operations. While the digital age has created numerous opportunities, it has also generated unprecedented security threats. As a result, the need for strong cybersecurity practices has never been greater.
Nevertheless, the complexity of cybersecurity can be intimidating, presenting an obstacle for many organizations. By reducing the complexity of cybersecurity, we can empower organizations to confront digital challenges head-on. Let’s explore how we can make cybersecurity accessible and effective for your organization.
Why Is Cybersecurity Important?
In today’s tightly connected world, data is everything.
It shapes business decisions, guides marketing efforts, and most importantly, it builds trust with your customers. If you don’t protect your organization’s and your customers’ data, you risk losing that trust, and the financial implications could be devastating.
Furthermore, businesses across all sectors—including the fund administration industries—are seeing an increased emphasis on stringent cybersecurity regulations, making it crucial to maintain secure practices.
What Should Organizations Focus on in 2023?
The field of cybersecurity is expected to be significantly influenced by a number of important developments as we go forward into 2023. It is essential for your company to have the resources necessary to deal with the following trends:
More Remote Work
Due to the pandemic, working from home has become the new norm, and this change is here to stay. Employees are now spread out in different places and networks, so the standard office boundary has disappeared. This means remote computers need strong security measures.
After all, hackers can easily break into your workers’ home networks.
Employees must get basic cybersecurity training to secure their systems and the company’s digital assets. Regular training on phishing, password security, and software upgrades might be helpful.
Transition to Cloud-based Infrastructure
Cloud-based infrastructure offers scalability, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness. However, it also brings unique security challenges. Misconfigured cloud services, limited access restrictions, and a lack of awareness throughout the cloud environment are all common exploitable weaknesses.
To safeguard cloud data, organizations must have a solid cloud security policy that includes encryption, intrusion detection systems, access management, and frequent audits.
Increased Supply Chain Interactions
The digitization of the supply chain has increased communication between businesses and consumers. Cybersecurity threats are compounded by the fact that each link in the supply chain is a potential weak point. Businesses should check the security of their supply chains from every angle. Automated tools for monitoring and identifying suspicious actions inside the supply chain network, as well as frequent audits of suppliers’ security measures, should be implemented.
The convergence of Information Technology (IT), Operational Technology (OT), and the Internet of Things (IoT) has opened new avenues for innovation. However, it also presents unique cybersecurity challenges.
The lack of internet connectivity in the original design of OT systems has made them vulnerable to cyberattacks. As the world becomes more connected through the Internet of Things (IoT), the potential for cyberattacks has grown exponentially.
To effectively protect against threats, a comprehensive approach is necessary. This includes measures such as network segmentation, regular system patching, strict access controls, and ongoing monitoring of the IT/OT-IoT environment for any unusual activity.
Steps to Simplify Your Cybersecurity Process
The complex and rapidly changing nature of cybersecurity can be overwhelming, but it’s easier to tackle in bite-sized chunks. Let’s go over each of these in detail:
Step 1: Audit Your Current Cybersecurity Measures
Start by investigating your current cybersecurity setup. Recognize where you stand by identifying the technologies and processes you have in place and how well they’re performing. This audit should cover all elements of your cybersecurity framework, from firewalls to user access controls. Identify any gaps or weak points that could potentially be exploited by cybercriminals.
Step 2: Develop a Comprehensive Cybersecurity Policy
Once you understand your current situation, the next step is to develop a thorough cybersecurity policy. This policy should cover all aspects of your organization, including email use, remote work, data handling and response to potential threats
Make sure this policy is easily understandable and accessible to all employees, reinforcing the idea that cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility.
Step 3: Invest in Training
Cybersecurity policies are only as effective as the people who enforce them. Regular training sessions should be held to ensure your team understands the policy and knows how to spot potential threats. These sessions can cover everything from recognizing phishing emails to following best practices for password security.
Step 4: Regularly Update and Patch Your Systems
Outdated software is like a beacon for cybercriminals. Regular updates and patches are essential to fix any vulnerabilities that might have been discovered since the last update. Automated update systems can help ensure no critical patch gets overlooked.
Step 5: Implement Multifactor Authentication
While passwords are a crucial first line of defense, they aren’t foolproof. Implementing multifactor authentication wherever possible adds an extra layer of security. This could involve something you know (a password), something you have (a smartphone), and something you are (biometric data).
Step 6: Regularly Back Up Your Data
Even with the best precautions, breaches can still happen. Regular backups ensure that your data can be recovered in the event of a breach or a system failure. Automating your backups and storing them in a secure offsite location can further increase your data security.
Step 7: Consider Outsourcing Your Cybersecurity
Even with strong internal measures, it’s worth considering outsourcing your cybersecurity to a trusted third-party provider. These experts can provide a layer of protection and expertise that’s hard to match in-house. Third-party providers offer cybersecurity solutions to address security challenges and can stay ahead of emerging threats in the rapidly evolving cybersecurity landscape.
Cybersecurity is an absolute requirement in today’s interconnected world. Your company can confidently traverse the complicated online landscape if its leaders recognize the value of cybersecurity, stay up with the newest developments, and take steps to streamline their cybersecurity processes. While the path to cyber security may be difficult, it is one that can be navigated with the right mindset and preparation. Together, let’s rise to the challenge and protect our digital futures.