In a world of constantly evolving cyber threats where more than 560,000 new malware attacks are discovered daily, businesses are constantly facing cyber security challenges. Whilst many businesses rightly invest in comprehensive cyber security solutions to guard against these threats, no solution can be 100% effective and in many cases, the threats you face can be beyond your control. For example, the recent MOVEit Data Breach has affected millions of people worldwide and thousands of businesses. These businesses included many of the UK’s biggest names, including; Boots, British Airways, Ofcom and more. The data breach was caused by a security vulnerability in the MOVEit Software that these businesses could not protect against and in many cases involved the sharing of data with third parties, Zellis who handle Payroll for Boots and British Airways use MOVEit and this was the cause of their Data Breach.
Having a Cyber Security Incident Response Plan (CSIRP) is of paramount importance, even if you have the right security in place, it exists as a comprehensive set of guidelines to follow following a cyber attack or breach. Here is why it is essential for every business, irrespective of the security measures in place;
1. The Inevitability of Security Breaches
No matter how robust and comprehensive a cyber security solution might be, there is no such thing as 100% security. The technological landscape is ever-evolving, and so are the methods cyber criminals employ. A minor oversight, a new vulnerability in a software application, a breach of a third-party service, or a novel attack vector can lead to a successful breach. Thus, having a plan to respond to such incidents can make the difference between rapid recovery and severe repercussions.
2. Mitigation of Financial Losses
Breaches can result in substantial financial damage, from the direct costs associated with addressing the breach; from potential regulatory fines to loss of customer trust. A well-prepared CSIRP can reduce the time it takes to identify, contain, and mitigate a breach, thereby significantly cutting down potential financial losses.
3. Reputation Management
A company's reputation is one of its most valuable assets. While a breach can tarnish this reputation, the way a company responds can make a significant difference. A swift and transparent response, facilitated by a thorough Cyber Security Incident Response Plan, can help maintain customer trust and confidence.
4. Regulatory Compliance
In the UK (United Kingdom), the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 mandate the protection of personal data. In the event of a breach, companies are required to notify authorities, and, in some cases, the individuals affected within 72 hours of a breach. Having a CSIRP ensures that businesses can follow and meet these regulatory requirements in a timely manner.
5. Operational Continuity
A cyber security incident can disrupt normal business operations. An effective response plan not only focuses on mitigating the incident but also on ensuring that measures are in place for critical business operations can continue, or be restored, quickly. This can involve working with third-party Cyber Security Professionals such as ourselves to assist in the recovery and restoration of data or backups and implementing security measures to prevent further disruption.
6. Improved Stakeholder Communication
During a breach, clear communication with stakeholders, including employees, shareholders, customers and clients, is crucial. A CSIRP provides a blueprint for such communication, ensuring that all relevant parties are informed in an appropriate and timely manner, and in accordance with regulatory requirements.
7. Lessons Learned
Every incident, whether minor or major, offers lessons to be learned. A CSIRP often includes a post-incident review phase, ensuring that the business finds the source of the breach, learns from its mistakes, and refines its cyber security defence measures and response strategy.
A Cyber Security Incident Response Plan is not just an additional layer of protection but a fundamental element of a comprehensive cyber security strategy. As the saying goes, "Hope for the best but prepare for the worst.". In the realm of cyber threats, preparation in the form of a Cyber Security Incident Response Plan can make all the difference in recovering from a cyber attack and safeguarding your company's assets, your business reputation, and your future.
If you would like a template Cyber Security Incident Response Plan complete the form below. Please note that this is only an example of a CSIRP, and we recommend that you customise this to suit your business’s unique requirements.
TwentyFour IT takes a proactive approach to your business cyber defence strategy. Our Endpoint Detection and Response services use Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to monitor for Unusual, Suspicious or Malicious activity on your business devices and block it in its tracks, and when paired with our Security Operations Centre our team of Cyber Security experts is constantly monitoring for potential new threats, hunting out hidden ones, patching security vulnerabilities and much more besides. In addition to this, we can conduct regular Penetration Testing and ongoing Vulnerability Scanning across your business infrastructure to identify potential weak points in your cyber defences before the attackers do.
Complete the form below to speak to us around about your Cyber Security and get your free Cyber Defence Health Check