five tips for staying ahead of cyber security threats - cyber attacks - data breach v2

Businesses today are in a race against cyber criminals. And with the cost of cyber-crime ever-rising and reaching $600 billion in 2017 alone, it’s not surprising that security is on the top of many CEOs’ lists of business priorities.

Your customers operating in Europe might be feeling the threat in particular, as the market is suffering the highest economic impact of cyber-crime. But as their service provider, there are some top tips for staying ahead of cyber security threats that you can help them with.

 

#1 Educate about best practices

One of the things that puts businesses at the most risk is human error. Around fifty-two per cent of data breaches are caused by workers, with some clicking on insecure links, using USBs that end up in the wrong hands, or opening attachments in phishing emails. It’s this human error that puts even the biggest firms at risk, but can be avoided with the right education.

As a service provider, you can educate your customers about best practices when it comes to cyber security in the workplace, so they can establish effective policies and train their employees to keep data safe.

 

#2 Establish a Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) policy

The surge in personal devices being used for work-related tasks, combined with the introduction of new data protection legislation, makes it even more important for organisations to establish a BYOD policy.

Businesses need to ensure they have clear guidelines on the proper and improper uses of personal devices for work and be strictly enforced, as part of their security policies. The guidelines might include items such as protection on devices, encryption of data, and installation of security applications to keep devices secure from hackers.

As well as having a strong BYOD policy, organisations can also benefit from implementing a unified endpoint management (UEM) solution like IBM’s award-winning MaaS360 with Watson. The platform helps deliver cognitive insights, contextual analytics and cloud-sourced bench-marking capabilities to businesses, so they can make sense of the mobile device minutiae encountered daily – while protecting endpoints, users, apps, docs, and data from one interface.

Service providers can get a free 30-day trial of MaaS360 by clicking here.

 

#3 Leverage predictive analytics

In addition to monitoring the use of mobile devices, it’s critical for organisations to also leverage the data they have to gain real-time insight into cyber security threats.

To do this, businesses need to use analytics with security information and event management (SIEM) software, so they can quickly detect incoming threats and deal with them head-on before they do any damage inside the network.

Service providers can offer customers these capabilities by deploying solutions like IBM QRadar in the cloud, as a service. The sophisticated security analytics platform allows security analysts to detect deviations from normal activities, identify rogue insiders, stop advanced threats and make sure continuous compliance from a single piece of software.

You and your customers can experience QRadar with a free trial by clicking here.

 

#4 Take a multi-layered approach to security

Organisations truly looking to strengthen their protection against cyber-attacks need to take a multi-layered approach to their network security, ensuring that each single defence component has a back-up, in-case of an error.

Some of the security layers used could include web protection, email security and archiving, antivirus software, data encryption, firewalls, spam filters, privacy controls and more. The layers should also consider proactive security to stop threats before they happen, detective security, like predictive analytics, to identify emerging threats, and reactive security to recover systems and data quickly in the case of an attack.

For service providers, offering a multi-layered approach by having a range of security solutions under your belt can help you offer customers a best-in-class service, differentiate you from the competition, and increase your profitability.

 

#5 Insure against risk

Although it doesn’t prevent against cyber security threats, cyber insurance offers an innovative way for higher-risk organisations to protect themselves against losses should a security attack or data breach occur.

If a business opts for cyber insurance, it’s important for them to ensure they work with an insurer that has the expertise to advise on the cover needed, states what is covered by their policy and ensures that adequate cover is purchased.

As a service provider with security expertise, you can offer your customers advice on whether cyber insurance is an appropriate measure by evaluating their exposure to risk. In some cases, your assessment might identify opportunities to offer preventable security solutions to customers, to mitigate their risk of an attack before it takes place.

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