How to Plan Your Cybersecurity Infrastructure for 2023
Having a thorough cybersecurity plan in place is a fundamental way to keep your business safe from cyber threats. The third quarter of 2022 brought a twenty eight percent increase in cyber attacks. Organizations were hit over one thousand times each week by cybercriminals. The industry taking the brunt of these attacks was the education sector with one of the largest cyber attacks occurring in LA’s unified school district. It suffered an infrastructure attack that led to significant disruption. Although there was an increase in attacks in 2022, the numbers seem to have plateaued a bit since 2021. The reason for this is thought to be that businesses and governments are starting to address the risks associated with cybersecurity and have started to invest in mitigation strategies.
Why should a business have a cybersecurity plan in place?
Cyber attacks are the new normal for all types of businesses. Cybercriminals do not discriminate; they attack everything from large manufacturers to small retail businesses. When an attack does happen, every second counts when mitigating the damage from it. Every cybersecurity plan should include an incident response plan that will swiftly reduce the damage associated with cybersecurity attacks. Not only can a business suffer financial damage from a cyber attack, but it can also suffer damage to its reputation. If sensitive data is stolen, that can make your customers, stakeholders, and employees think that you are not being responsible enough to keep their data safe. Read on to learn more on how to plan your cybersecurity infrastructure for 2023.
Step one of how to plan your cybersecurity for 2023 – Identify your key assets.
The first step is to find out what you need to protect with your cybersecurity plan. An asset is any data, device, or other component of an organization’s system that is considered valuable. Assets can be physical such as hardware and phones. They can also be infrastructure such as servers and support systems. The most common assets in any business are information ones. These are databases, physical files, and any other sensitive information that is stored.
When identifying your key assets, you will also want to identify the information asset container. This is where information is kept, for example if you are identifying databases, the asset information container would be the application that was used to create the database. If it is a physical object such as a file, it would be the filing cabinet where information resides.
Step two of how to plan your cybersecurity for 2023 – Prioritize risks, assets, and threats.
To start this step, you should ask yourself three questions. What are the risks and threats in your organization? What are the main concerns of your organization regarding cybersecurity? What risks and threats would harm your organization more? Certain industries are more susceptible to cyber attacks than others.
Cybersecurity statistics showed that healthcare, finance, government, and education were the most targeted in 2022. All of these industries have become frequent targets because of their financial worth, valuable data, and critical infrastructure. After you have determined all of your risks, you should then decide on treatments and classify them from easiest to hardest.
Step 3 of how to plan your cybersecurity for 2023 – Define and establish your security goals.
When planning out the goals for your cybersecurity plan, you must make sure that they align with your larger business goals. An easy way to do this is to only create cybersecurity goals that do not compromise the other goals of your business. This can be a challenging process but asking the following questions can help.
What incidences of cybersecurity problems has the business experienced in the past? What are the goals that need to be achieved? What goals does the business have outside of cybersecurity? Will this plan be executed by internal IT staff or by a managed service provider?
Step four of how to plan your cybersecurity for 2023 – Develop an incident response plan.
Once your security goals are decided, an incident response plan should be established. Incident response plans are usually set up in phases. They are as follows:
Phase 1 – Prepare: This is the most important stage. Ensure employees have the proper training before implementing the new cybersecurity plan. It is also important to make sure all aspects of the plan have been approved and have the proper funding backing them.
Phase 2 – Identify: This phase will determine whether or not your business has experienced a breach. The easiest way to do this is to look for any deviations from normal operations.
Phase 3 – Contain: Once your employees are aware of the breach, cautiously approach the problem and decide how to mitigate it without making hasty and rash decisions.
Phase 4 – Eradicate: Once the problem has been contained, anything that led to it must be eliminated. These are often faulty policies and or procedures. After the problem is solved, all systems should be patched.
Phase 5 – Recovery: The goal of this phase is simple; to get your systems back in working order without concern of another breach or attack.
Phase 6 – Review: Once the incident is over, your business can focus on recovery. Meet with all of your team members that were involved in the incident and discuss what you have learned. This helps prepare you and your staff for future attacks.
Step five of how to plan your cybersecurity for 2023 – Execute the plan.
This is the final step of building a thorough cybersecurity plan. Before finishing the execution, you will need to make sure that you have the ability to get the work done for it. Is your internal IT team knowledgeable enough to implement the plan and do they have the bandwidth to do so? If you answered no to these questions, it is likely that you will need to hire a managed service provider or additional team members to execute your plan. Here are some questions to ask yourself when deciding whether to execute your cybersecurity plan internally or have a managed service provider do it.
What other projects does your internal IT team have coming up?
Is there a merger or acquisition in the near future?
Is my team knowledgeable enough to handle this changeover?