We live in an increasingly interconnected world, which has a huge range of benefits for both individuals and businesses. Critical to protecting these benefits and ensuring we get the most from the technology we invest in is robust cybersecurity. But what does this term actually mean and why is it important?
Cybersecurity – the basics
At its foundation, cybersecurity is simply a way of providing protection to programmes, systems and networks against a digital attack. No one is immune from digital attack, as the range of threats increases by the day, targeting huge international brands, as well as small businesses and individuals. A cybersecurity breach can do untold damage to enterprises, from reputational damage through to financial loss, and can be used to obtain sensitive data, extort money and steal identities.
Why is cybersecurity important?
It’s particularly important to have strong cybersecurity measures in place today due to the number and variety of threats. Attackers are increasingly innovative and, as we use more and more devices to access networks, there are many more opportunities for those looking to do so to break through defences. It’s important to have cybersecurity in place that is not only suited to individual need but that also meets high standards. Without this there may be loss, business interruption or reputation damage. So, what do you need to consider?
- A multi-layered approach. Today, effective cybersecurity requires unified threat management with protection across any network, system, data, device or program that may potentially be vulnerable. There must be systems in place for detecting threats, investigating and dealing with issues across all relevant processes and technology.
- People have a big role to play in cybersecurity. Within an organisation people are key to how effective cybersecurity can really be. Training and ensuring an understanding of key security principles, such as how to handle passwords, can make a huge difference to how well protected the business is.
- Preparation is essential. It’s crucial to put clear steps in place that identify what needs to happen, both with respect to an attempted cybersecurity breach and one that is successful. This will ensure that everyone is clear on how potential attacks will be detected, what the expected response should be to a threat and how and when recovery from an attack will take place.
- Use all tools available. Technology today provides a very wide range of tools that can be used to help improve cybersecurity. There are three areas where these tools are likely to be the most effective: devices (such as computers), business networks and also the cloud. From DNS filtering to anti-virus software and the next generation of firewalls there are a range of different options available when it comes to putting protections in place at each of these key locations.
Cybersecurity is a critical protection mechanism for the systems that we rely on to survive today. Even the most basic approach can help to guard against attack and consequent loss.
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