October is Cybersecurity Month – a chance for businesses and individuals alike to educate themselves on protecting data against a growing number of threats. In the spirit of the month, we’re looking at cybersec basics by zeroing in on four things every business needs to know about cybersecurity.
Cybercrime is increasing rapidly, Silicon Valley giants are being caught up in data scandals, and data breaches are hitting the headlines daily; it should come as no surprise that cybersecurity has found itself so high up on the list of priorities for businesses across the globe.
Of course, cybersecurity isn’t always the most straightforward arena, and many business owners – even those who openly acknowledge that they need to take action – stall at the sheer immensity of the task ahead of them.
That’s what makes Cybersecurity Month such a fantastic opportunity: individuals and businesses can be made aware of resources, brought up to speed on the latest solutions, and take a keen eye to their own cybersecurity.
The following are just a few things you need to know this Cybersecurity Month – and beyond. Settle in and be sure to check back on our news section to keep up to date!
1. There Are More Data Breaches Happening Than You Think
Since 2013 – when the Breach Level Index began its real-time recording – tens of billions of records have been lost or stolen in cybersecurity breaches. Of these breaches, only a tiny percentage were been ‘secure’: a breach where encryption was used, rendering the stolen data useless.
The rapid increase of breaches is worrying, and just goes to show that although you may think that nobody would ever want your data, the likelihood that you’ll be targeted is, unfortunately, just as high as Facebook, Bupa, or any other organisation.
2. MFA is The Way to Go
MFA – or multi-factor authentication – has been growing in popularity for some time now, and it’s easy to see why.
The faithful password hasn’t lost its allure over the years, with a NordPass survey revealing that 7/10 UK respondents admitted to having more than ten password-protected accounts and 2/10 have more than 50.
The problem is: we simply can’t remember them all, many passwords find themselves recycled across different accounts or scribbled down on post-it notes. Factor in recent data breaches and the impact they’ve had on user security, and the nails are truly being hammered into the password’s coffin.
This is where MFA offers a fresh outlook. By using a combination of the traditional password alongside authenticator apps, biometrics and many other potential credentials (or ‘factors’), users can log into applications securely with MFA. This way, even if a password is stolen, there are extra layers of security to keep sensitive information safe – buying precious time to secure accounts.
3. Joiners, Movers and Leavers Present a Security Problem
Did you know that one of the greatest threats to your security comes from within? Yes, the people in your organisation – usually through no fault of their own – represent one of the greatest security challenges thanks to traditional joiner, mover and leaver (JML) processes.
When somebody moves throughout the organisation, they are naturally granted additional access to sensitive documents and information. Following the traditional process – usually manual and involving much paper-based communication between IT, HR and managers – movers can gradually amass inappropriate access to documents across the organisation.
Meanwhile, employees leaving the company aren’t always automatically de-provisioned, meaning they still technically have access to the company’s data. It’s a huge risk, and one that can be easily resolved by implementing an effective, automated system.
4. Cybersecurity Needs to be a Focus All Year Round
As identity and access management experts, we love the idea of Cybersecurity Month, but we also know better than to only pay attention to cybersecurity during one month of the year. The reality is that businesses and individuals need to make cybersecurity a year-round focus, securing their personal and organisational data from outside threats and exploring solutions to support those actions.
It’s true that the threats may keep evolving, but as frontline IAM experts, we also recognise that solutions are keeping up – and are more than capable of keeping businesses one step ahead.
What will you take away from #CybersecurityMonth? Tweet us what you’ve learnt at @IdentityExperts.
To find out more about securing your company’s sensitive information 365 days of the year, feel free to get in touch with our team – we’re happy to help.