Top Cybersecurity Strategies for Small and Medium Sized Businesses (SMBs)

Top Cybersecurity Strategies for Small and Medium Sized Businesses (SMBs)

We are living in the new age of cyber threat. If it was assessed as a nation, then cybercrime would have been the world’s third biggest economy after USA and China. Medium sized businesses are usually considered the hotspot for cybercriminals. A general misconception among cybercriminals is that medium sized businesses don’t do much to strengthen their cybersecurity, hence they are an easy target. These businesses are often targeted as a thoroughfare to targets having higher value, critical systems along with highly exclusively categorized information.

Most of these business plan to build or have already started to build the sweeping, technology driven changes in the organizational structure that makes a digital transformation. A growing majority of these companies say that these amendments are important for their competitiveness and business growth.

However, the cyber challenges faced by medium sized businesses are versatile in nature. They are actually under-resourced and are mainly affected by worldwide shortage of cyber skills. Small or non existent teams, security teams are given the task of defending the business from the complete range of cyber threats. It ranges from complex, innovative and targeted campaigns to extremely quick moving smash and grab attacks.

It is done while managing an increasingly distributed workforce and sophisticated digital infrastructure. These challenges extend beyond the adequate resources. The threats that are faced by these firms are too quick and stealthy for humans to compete with and the amount of latest avenues for cybercriminals to obtain entry is growing at an alarming rate which is too rapid for the security team to monitor.

Breaches can never be permanently stopped

Traditional security solutions attempt to prevent hackers from penetrating the system by verifying threats based on the past attacks. These attacks are categorized as “bad” and are guarded against on the basis of “rules and signature” approach. However, it is futile to attempt to stop hackers from entering the system as that is beneficial for only low level attacks. The high level attacks that are faced by these businesses are immune to the traditional security solutions.

Rather, business leaders must trap the attacks quickly and reduce the disruption so that the company is not affected negatively. Accepting the fact that these attacks will continue to occur is not accepting failure. It is the reality of mobile, global and interconnected businesses.

The top strategies that must be employed by businesses to respond effectively against cyber threats include-

  • Monitor and Target– When a hacker has obtained a foothold in an organization, it is crucial that the abnormal behavior is monitored continuously by the security team for detecting the traces of the upcoming attacks. There is always a time period of a cybercriminal having an initial foothold and is figuring out what to do next. This period can be used by the businesses to their advantage.
  • Always expect some form of security breach- Organizations should always perform tests on their current capabilities and must have a plan for action regarding the worst case scenario. They should regularly monitor if the current mechanisms provide enough warning and are able to ward off threats long enough for the company to take action. Separating networks makes it tougher for the hacker to move easily with pace.
  • Build a security culture- Business leaders should emphasize the necessity of cyber security within the organization. Every department must know the relevancy of cyber security regarding their work. The company board should be briefed consistently on cyber security and security providers must partake in the process. Ideally, the CISO must be a part of the top management team. If not, then the major personnel in the security team should provide regular briefings to the management teams on how the business responds to cyberattacks.

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