Cyber Essentials #5 – Ultimately, it’s about data!

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Is it about stealing and using them, preventing access to them, declassifying, encrypting or deleting them. Even denial of service attacks are designed to disrupt access to data. To paraphrase a classic – data makes the world go round! Learn how to protect information contained in your data while it is stored, processed, or transmitted. Identify information critical to operations on your network. Prepare plans to assist in recovering and restoring systems, networks, and data from an orderly and up-to-date backup.

  1. Find out what information is on your network. Information about critical or sensitive inventory. You can simplify doing this in two ways:
    • Using a Data Loss Prevention class system

    • Using the Data Classification system

Regardless of which one starts, it is necessary to initiate and support the so-called “Risk owners”. These are the business representatives who will suffer the greatest losses when a given type of information is lost or falls into the wrong hands. For example, the Finance Director certainly has an idea of ​​what the most valuable information is in his department.

  1. Find out what’s happening on your network. Map data flows, key repositories and highest risk users. Up-to-date information will provide a benchmark for safety testing, continuous monitoring and safety-based decision making.
  1. Assure Domain Name System Protection. Domain Name System (DNS) protection blocks dangerous websites and filters out unwanted content. DNS servers ensure that work devices connect through a secure portal. This one adds a layer of protection against malware, phishing and other viruses. This way you will focus on the human element – that is, the one that fails most often. Also, take advantage of anti-malware capabilities – such as Endpoint or Network Detection & Response. Malware is designed to spread quickly. Failure to defend against it may completely damage, destroy, or prevent access to your data.
  1. Create regular automatic backups and redundancy of key systems. Regular backups protect against ransomware and malware attacks. Use local and remote backup methods to protect sensitive information. Backup priorities (based on information validity) and have a schedule of what needs to be brought back online so your business can continue to function during a cyber attack.
  1. Keep your backups safe, including physical security, encryption, and offline backups.
    • Make sure your backed up data is safely stored offsite or in the cloud. Your backups should be kept in a safe place, especially if you are prone to natural disasters.

    • Periodically test your ability to recover data from backups.With additional point to identify the key files you need to access if online backups are unavailable to access your files when you are not connected to the Internet.

Data can be compromised according to the CIA paradigm – by attacking their confidentiality, integrity or availablity – and each of these three areas must be secured. Technologically and organizationally – because there is always too much protection until it turns out to be ineffective. This is when the culprits are most often looked for. The key is to understand:

  • What is important for business
  • What is the potential risk – which of the above-mentioned parameters should be protected? (CIA)
  • How is this data processed?
  • What is currently being done to protect them?
  • What needs to be improved?

We are happy to share our experiences in implementing aforementioned approach to your security strategy.

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