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In today’s digital world, cybersecurity seems to always make headlines. We don’t seem to be able to go very long without hearing about yet another breach. Much of today’s cyber woes come from improper security planning an implementation. We’re in the middle of a massive shift in the way we do business. More and more organizations of all sizes are going to an “internet-first” digital transformation.

This is great news. An internet-first company enjoys unparalleled convenience and the ability to change and mold their technology rapidly for better results. The issue is that securing an internet-first organization becomes inherently more complex. The “traditional” technology infrastructure is in the on-premise network. This means that IT pros relied on the barriers put in place on the network (like firewalls and VPNs) to protect corporate data. As we shift to an internet-first digital approach, we can no longer rely on our internal networks to protect our data.

Multi-Layered Security

A critical component of modern security is utilizing multiple layers to protect your infrastructure at every possible entry point. At a minimum this should include:

  • Email Security
    Most malware is delivered via email nowadays. In addition to malicious attachments, phishing is the number one method used by cybercriminals to access sensitive systems. A good email security platform does a great job at stopping malicious emails and phishing campaigns in their tracks.
  • Endpoint Security
    “Endpoints” are your workstations and mobile devices that your people use to access and work with data. To protect the data they access, we must ensure they are secured. This is done with multiple components:

    • Anti-virus/Malware
      An endpoint protection tool such as Deep Instinct (used with our Stellar IT customers) or Sentinel One (we use this in our cloud) uses advanced machine-learning to stop threats in their tracks before they can wreak havoc.
    • Intrusion Detection
      There’s an old saying, “knowing is half the battle.” But in cybersecurity, knowing is all the battle. No matter how many layers of protection you have in place, it’s always possible for something to get in. An intrusion detection system like the one we use (Huntress Labs) identifies threats and can alert your IT professionals to the presence of a problem.
  • Web Security
    Web threats are still on the rise. Securing your access to the web is a crucial part of your security strategy. Web Security consists of filtering for both content and web-borne threats and is a very effective tool for protecting your data.
  • Encryption
    Encryption is a critical aspect of protecting data. Any time a laptop, mobile device, or other storage media for storing data goes missing, you’re at risk. Encrypting your data is an easy way to keep it out of the wrong hands (in a usable format at least)
  • Security Policies
    Controlling who and what (devices) can access your data is critical. Using access policies to ensure that devices connecting to your systems are secure, and using methods like two-factor authentication to ensure the right people are accessing the right data is important.

Securing Your People

The mass majority of data breaches are caused by people. Whether by accidental or malicious means, people are the weakest link in security. To help mitigate this, you must give your people tools and knowledge to help them be the guardians of your data. This is best done through security awareness training and giving them a path to report security concerns.

For example, nobody at Kirbside will ever face any sort of disciplinary action for reporting a security concern. Accidents happen, and we understand that. The quicker we know something has happened, the faster we can mitigate the threat created by that incident.

At the same time, it’s important to have policies in place that dictate who has access to what. Limiting access to data limits the potential impact of a breach. We recommend giving team members access only to what they need to do their best work.

 

In summary, as we move to an internet-first way of doing business, we must utilize an internet-first security strategy. If your business is struggling with its security strategy, book a call with us today to learn how Stellar IT goes above and beyond the call of duty to protect your business and your people.