In sports, the best defense is a good offense. The same can also be said for cybersecurity. In today’s digital age, cyber threats are everywhere. From phishing scams to distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, there are hundreds of ways that your business’s sensitive data can fall into the wrong hands. However, by taking a proactive approach, you can minimize your risk and better protect yourself.
The best way to avoid cybersecurity threats in the future is to plan ahead. You should have a comprehensive protocol in place to minimize damage if you do fall victim to an attack. For added security, it’s best to invest in managed solutions from a company that offers small business IT services. That way, you can rest assured that your network is being monitored and maintained at all times.
While planning is key to prevention, sometimes emergencies happen. Whether hackers gain access to your data through weak passwords, phishing attacks, or rogue employees, you must take immediate action to mitigate the issue promptly.
Let’s take a closer look at what to do in the event of a cyber-attack.
Steps to Take During a Cybersecurity Breach
You can find a great deal of advice about preventing cyber-attacks, but what do you do if you’re in the middle of a breach? Unfortunately, few companies have security plans in place prior to an attack, and therefore have a higher risk of data loss and monetary damages.
If your company has fallen victim to a security breach, don’t panic. By following a few key steps, you can minimize damage from the attack and regain control of your system.
1. Determine the Type of Attack
Some attacks are harder to detect than others. For example, hackers will often notify you of ransomware attacks by freezing your system and giving you instructions (which usually involve making a payment) to get your data back. In other cases, such as a virus obtained from a phishing email, you’ll need to find out what type of program has compromised your system and which files have been affected. Then, you can decide how to move forward.
2. Identify Which Systems Have Been Compromised
Once you’ve identified the type of attack, you’ll need to determine its scope. In other words, you must verify how widespread it is and which areas of your system have been affected. That way, you can prioritize your repair efforts.
3. Quarantine Any Malicious Files
If your system becomes infected by a virus or other malicious software, you’ll need to quarantine any affected files until it can be removed. That way, you can prevent the virus from spreading to other areas of your system.
4. Determine What Data Was Stolen
In the case of a breach, it’s essential to find out exactly what data was compromised and what the repercussions might be. This is crucial, as the information you gather will help you determine your next steps. For example, if you find that hackers gained access to customer credit card numbers, you’ll have to create a plan for compensation. Meanwhile, if the stolen data was solely internal information, you’ll need to correspond with employees and executives to ensure the issue doesn’t spread any further.
5. Notify Necessary Parties
Following a serious breach, you’ll likely have to make several mandatory disclosures. This might include notifying regulatory bodies, law enforcement, and any person whose data was compromised in the attack. Additionally, if your business’s financial information has been wrongfully accessed, you’ll need to maintain contact with your banks to prevent loss. While this is a mandatory step, it’s also the best way to go about rebuilding your company’s credibility.
6. Public Relations
Depending on the severity of the attack, you may want to consult a public relations specialist or have a PR plan in place. Make sure that your messaging tells customers how you’re mitigating the threat and protecting their information. These types of incidents can negatively impact your reputation in the industry, so it’s important to handle this step correctly. At the end of the day, honesty and transparency is everything. Your customers will want to know exactly what happened, what you’re doing to fix it, and how you’re going to prevent similar issues going forward.
The Bottom Line – Have a Plan in Place
The best way to minimize damage from a cyber-attack is to have a plan in place ahead of time. Handling a security issue without a clear procedure puts you at a significant disadvantage. It’s not insurmountable, but it does mean that you’ll lose more time and risk more damage to your reputation. With this in mind, prevention really is your best option. By designing a comprehensive security protocol, you can mitigate cyber threats and ensure your company has a step-by-step process to follow in the event of an attack. This should include:
- Remote Monitoring Services
- Increased Cybersecurity and Virus Protection
- A Secure Business Firewall Router
- Remote Threat Assessment Services
- Onsite and Cloud Data Backup
Looking for High-Quality IT Services?
If you’ve recently fallen victim to a cyber-attack or would like to set up a robust security protocol to prevent such issues, it’s best to get in touch with a reliable IT company. Luckily, NerdsToGo is here to help you handle all of your business cybersecurity needs. We offer a variety of custom business IT solutions that can help you ensure your data remains secure at all times.
For more information about our affordable IT solutions or to schedule a free cyber risk assessment, contact us today!