What causes cybersecurity breaches?
Many companies use outdated and poorly configured technology, and bad employee cybersecurity habits to protect themselves from hackers. This has led to a high profile of breaches in companies’ data, putting the reputation of most organizations at risk. According to McAfee, companies and consumers lose as much as $575 billion every year from hackers
Recent breaches at Sony
and J.P. Morgan are dramatic demonstrations of what can happen with a cyberattack. Even digital giants, such as eBay and Yahoo, have lost millions of records because of hackers. Just a couple of months ago, the consumer service agency
(Equifax) reported that the cyberattack may have affected 143 million in the United States.
For companies like Equifax or Sony a major data breach is damaging, but they have the resources to recover and will likely not go out of business because of it. Smaller organizations don’t have that luxury and would likely not survive a major breach.
The best offense against cyberattacks is to play defense, and the best starting point is an IT security audit to understand where its controls are, their effectiveness and vulnerabilities.
What Exactly Is a Cybersecurity Audit?
An audit is a risk assessment of an organization from multiple angles:
Network security – Is the network secured by the following:
- Regular software patching
- Properly secured wireless network
- Established and enforced password policies
- Are workstations, servers, and backup appliances encrypted?
Security response and contingency planning
- Are there documented disaster recovery procedures in place?
- Are there redundancies in all critical systems?
- Is there an incident response procedure in the event of a security breach?
- Can the organization track who or when someone enters the room(s) where the servers are?
- Can the organization track the movement of visitors and guests while in the facility?
- Are there strong physical controls that prevent unauthorized personnel from accessing the facilities?
- Can the organization monitor or restrict workforce members’ access to computer systems?
- Are mobile devices centrally managed?
- How are they protecting data?
- Are all workforce members required to take security training?
One way or another, your business might be a target. An audit provides the information you need to fully evaluate cybersecurity practices and remediate issues before a breach occurs.
What to do next?
It’s key to have a clear picture of where your cybersecurity stands to know what to do next. Enlist your staff responsible for IT to create a plan of action. If you don’t have the luxury of doing IT audits internally, we can help.
Our IT security audits
are designed for businesses of all sizes but are especially ideal for regulated industries like Registered Investment Advisors (RISs), Government Contractors, Healthcare providers and Law Offices
. The audits are ready to help you comply with a wide range of regulating authorities including the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), HIPAA, FISMA NIST SP 800-171 and Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
If you are looking for an expert opinion on where to go next with your cybersecurity audit, feel free to reach out to our team