5 Proactive cybersecurity strategies to bolster your defenses

5 Proactive cybersecurity strategies to bolster your defenses

Cyberattacks have become such a common occurrence that companies can no longer afford to take a reactive approach to their cybersecurity strategies. Instead of waiting for a data breach to occur and scrambling to contain the damage, businesses must take proactive measures to ensure their assets and information are fully protected.

We break down the best ways of developing a proactive cybersecurity strategy below, helping you mitigate the risk of cyberthreats and maintain customer trust.

Implement security awareness training

Human error is a leading factor in security breaches; in fact, it's predicted to cause over half the world's major cybersecurity incidents by 2025. Plenty of cybercrime tactics, such as phishing and social engineering, rely on tricking employees into revealing sensitive information or unwittingly downloading malicious software.

Continuous security awareness training helps employees become more security conscious and learn to identify the latest threats. The training should cover topics such as spotting common phishing tactics, understanding the importance of good password hygiene, and properly managing sensitive information.

Implement multi-factor authentication (MFA)

Multi-factor authentication helps prevent breaches by requiring not only something you know (username and password), but also utilizing something you have, such as a smart phone with an authenticator app on it. Implementing multi-factor authentication everywhere you can will greatly increase the chances that an attacker will not be able to log into your account because of a stolen or weak password.

Adopt a multilayered defense system

Relying on a single security measure like a basic firewall simply isn’t enough to protect your systems; you need to have defenses for networks, devices, user accounts, and more.

It’s therefore vital to implement a multilayered security strategy that combines various technologies such as intrusion prevention systems, anti-malware software, end-to-end encryption protocols, and access control mechanisms.

When it comes to access privileges, employees should only be given access to the resources and data they need for their job. For instance, someone from customer service has no business accessing personal employee records and proprietary information. This greatly minimizes the potential harm caused by a security breach or insider threat.

Users must also contribute to cybersecurity by setting long and unique passwords for each of their accounts. Implementing a high-quality password manager can make it easy for your staff to create and store strong and unique passwords for every system that they access.

Finally, you must have a thorough backup and recovery procedure in case a cyberattack does manage to breach your defenses. These backups make it easy to quickly recover your data and remain operational as if the security breach had never occurred.

Conduct regular audits and risk assessments

Security audits can offer you a comprehensive overview of the current state of your cybersecurity measures. This typically involves examining various aspects of your IT environment, such as your network configurations, access controls, software updates, and security practices. These systematic reviews help identify any potential weaknesses in your current security strategy, allowing you to take corrective actions before they’re exploited by cyberattackers.

Risk assessments, on the other hand, focus on identifying potential threats and their impact on the organization. They analyze the likelihood of different types of security incidents and assess the potential consequences in terms of financial loss, reputational damage, and legal liabilities. Through this, you can then develop targeted threat mitigation strategies as well as ensure compliance with industry regulations and standards.

Regularly test your cybersecurity strategy

Regularly testing your security strategies allows you to pinpoint any weaknesses and areas for improvement before a real cyberattack occurs. Consider simulating various attack scenarios, such as phishing attempts and malware infections, to evaluate how well your security controls and incident response procedures perform under pressure. These simulated attacks can provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of your strategy as well as any gaps that need addressing.

Moreover, regular testing can help you and your employees stay on top of the latest cyberthreats. With hackers constantly developing new techniques to bypass traditional security measures, it’s important to constantly evaluate and update your practices to stay one step ahead.

Keep ahead of the curve with the latest solutions in cybersecurity. Our team at Fidelis can help guide you through the best tools, services, and practices to improve your security posture and keep hackers at bay. We’ll ensure your data stays in safe hands — get in touch today to learn more.

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