Many organizations work diligently to employ the latest cybersecurity technology. Securing networks and private data is a top priority for organizations of every size in Alberta, yet there should still be major concerns with relying on technology alone. The assumption that a better digital infrastructure will prevent malicious attacks can put your business at risk. Without best practices, even the best digital defenses don’t stand a chance.
Trust no one.
Every organization should begin with a zero-trust model. What is zero-trust? It is the assumption that none of your networks, internal or external, are secure. This demands a proactive approach that encourages consistent monitoring and constant improvement. Zero-trust also demands that you avoid putting trust in network users. As drastic as it sounds, best practice means never sharing passwords, never giving people access to more of your company information than is necessary to do their jobs, and carefully vetting third-party vendors.
Use multifactor authentication whenever possible and implement emerging technology, such as behavioral analytics. This detects network patterns and monitors user activity to fight insider threats, whether they are a result of innocent mistakes that can be remedied or are malicious activities that need to be checked.
Know what’s worth protecting.
Businesses often make the mistake of implementing technology that is not useful to their unique IT needs. Before you jump at the chance to install the latest cybersecurity update, identify your assets, the risks specific to your organization, and your main vulnerabilities. Once you’ve measured performance and what needs to be strengthened, you can select the right tools and get the best return on your investments. For example, a dental practice in Alberta is required to have specific protections in place for patient data that other organizations may not be required to have.
Focus on more than reactivity.
Prevention is a critical part of any cybersecurity strategy, and predictive analysis has come incredibly far in the proactive identification of threats. Big data offers businesses the opportunity to understand where improvements can be made based off automated processes and large sets of expansive cybersecurity information. Technological advancements are also changing how businesses can manage risk. However, no defense is foolproof. It’s a matter of when, not if, a cyberattack will occur, and your business needs a response strategy. Machine learning utilizes algorithms to make predictions based off real-time communications and transactions, allowing you to formulate a response to potential threats.
Instill a culture of security fundamentals.
The reality is, no cybersecurity technology can protect your business from careless staff. Employees are often one of the biggest vulnerabilities in an organization, and the only way to remedy this weak link is to provide education and consistent training. Tool integration is critical to a cybersecurity strategy, but only if employees understand why policies are important and how to use the tools available. Awareness of cybersecurity threats and precautionary practices within your organization is the best compliment to emerging technology.
A comprehensive cybersecurity strategy necessitates a true understanding of preventative measures, along with the technological tools that are appropriate for your business needs. Cybersecurity does call for constant updates as threats change; yet, relying on emerging technology alone will leave enormous vulnerabilities. Best practices that have been the cybersecurity norm, such as employee education and the zero-trust model, should remain a considerable piece of every cybersecurity strategy. When human error is always a factor, technology must have a human partner.
The ITeam understands the cybersecurity issues facing Canada businesses. We are committed to helping Calgary- and Alberta-based businesses develop proactive, cost-effective IT strategies that minimize risk and maximize efficiency. Contact us to learn more.