Recently, there has been a considerable increase in cyberattacks, compared to previous years.
"Billions of people were affected by data breaches and cyber attacks in 2018 – 765 million in the months of April, May and June alone", USA Today reports; an alarming amount that is causing a variety of damage, not limited to companies, but also at an individual level.
Virginia M. (Ginni) Rometty, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of IBM, stated that cyber security is a topic that must be taken seriously. “We believe that data is the phenomenon of our time. It is the world’s new natural resource. It is the new basis of competitive advantage, and it is transforming every profession and industry. If all of this is true – even inevitable – then cyber crime, by definition, is the greatest threat to every profession, every industry, every company in the world", Rometty said.
To get an idea of the damage that this type of crime can cause to a company, the research magazine Cybersecurity Ventures stated in its 2019 Official Annual Cybercrime Report that the costs include “damage and destruction of data, stolen money, lost productivity, theft of intellectual property, theft of personal and financial data, embezzlement, fraud, post-attack disruption to the normal course of business, forensic investigation, restoration and deletion of hacked data and systems, and reputational harm.” This information should put companies to work proactively in order to reduce risks.
One of the proactive ways to prevent cyber attacks (and protect data) is by selecting the right talent for, and investing in your tech team. Check out these 4 areas to consider when building your team, that can ultimately help you prevent a cyberattack.
On one hand, you must establish your company as an "employer of choice" for cybersecurity. A good place to start is through the demonstration of an investment in the most current tools and technologies, including detection and response of endpoints, patch management and threat intelligence softwares. Cybersecurity professionals will want to see that your company appreciates the need for cyber strategies beyond signature analysis.
On the other hand, you must hire people who understand the responsibilities that the role requires, beginning with evaluating the job description. "What most organizations really need are security professionals with very specialized skill sets, specific industry knowledge, and a proven ability to perform against their standards," states Philip Casesa, a cybersecurity leader.
Casesa also says that the following characteristics should be present in every cybersecurity performer that set them apart from the rest: be passionate and creative, enjoy solving problems, have a strategic mindset, and be flexible and/or adaptable to crisis scenarios.
Training - Competencies
In every industry, it is the knowledge of all professionals within a trained workforce, that can increase the competitiveness of the organization. However, when it comes to cybersecurity, not everyone thoroughly understands the risk of not having a trained workforce to face cybersecurity challenges.
In cyber, a lack of training can cost the company a lot, impacting activities that make the company run, causing loss -or compromise- of confidential data, as well as damage to product/service quality, physical property, and human life. In some extreme cases, it can force an organization to shut down.
"Today’s education and training systems are not keeping up with the current demand for skills, let alone tomorrow’s new demands."
In cyber, an educated and trained workforce translates to a talented team with the necessary knowledge to test their own defenses, locate attacks in progress, detect breaches in real time, respond to those incidents, investigate their root causes, and restore normal operations.
It is your responsibility as an employer to make sure your training processes are up to date, and meet the requirements for your company, in order to maintain a competitive ranking.
Keep in mind that in the end, a well trained workforce can keep your company alive.
New technologies are created daily, and similarly, people with ill intentions commit mischief on the Internet (ever heard of the Dark Web?), compromising the safety of people and companies.
In order for a tech team to work effectively in this landscape, they must rely on specific and necessary resources to protect the organization from those outside threats.
"Your employees already probably respect you because of your intelligence and leadership abilities. Good leaders don't shy away from new tech; they embrace it and learn about it."
Although technologies are changing daily, according to the pace at which society evolves, there are basic practices that differentiate a good technology implementation from a bad one.
1. Install, use and regularly update antivirus and anti spyware software on every computer used in your business.
2. Use a firewall for your Internet connection.
3. Download and install software updates for your operating systems and applications as they become available.
4. Control physical access to your computers and network components.
5. Require individual user accounts for each employee.
Source: The Capacity Group
Employee Engagement programs can cost a lot of money and time, which makes it perfectly reasonable for companies to express skepticism as to their ROI.
However, not investing in employees can cost more than expected. And just as in any industry, in cyber it is very important to keep the workforce committed to the organization in which they work; they are usually the heroes in a cybersecurity crisis.
There are several reports that support the idea of having engagement programs in place and how they impact your business. Benefits of having an employee engagement program can include the following:
When employees love what they do and speak positively to others, this includes clients. The price or quality of the product is not the only factor considered when making purchasing decisions; how they interact with employees and how they are treated is also important.
Happy employees tend to treat customers well. And, normally, this means that the client is happy too and... happy customers buy!
Engaged employees are more likely to work hard and own projects. When employees feel valued, they tend to be more competent, innovative, and accurate. When you have engaged employees, who strive to achieve company goals, the money follows.
When employees are interested in what they do, they are more likely to perform well. In addition, when employees are committed and feel valued by their leadership, they have a greater sense of responsibility and put their best effort into serving the company.
Most Importantly, Security
When employees are happy and are working in an excellent environment, they are more likely to become brand ambassadors and stay with the organization for a long period of time.
But more importantly, they will take ownership in your company, and they will take care of it as their own.
As cybersecurity leader Rajinder Tumber mentioned, "there is no organization 100% safe," but there are preventive measures that can be taken to significantly reduce the risk of being part of a cyberattack.
"The average cost of a data breach is $3.86 million,
with an average value of $148 per record."
Consider dedicating more time to understanding cybersecurity; it's a subject that every business should take into consideration. Living in such a hyper-connected world, a cyberattack can impact any company, of any size, and consequently, the safety of the people, your people.
Need help identifying the right tech talent for your organization? We’ve helped businesses build highly successful teams, and we can help you too. Click below to learn 5 tips that will help you hire right Tech talent.
Looking for a partner to help understand the cybersecurity industry, and add great talent to your tech team? Contact us to put you in the tech-experts hands of our partners from 3Ci. Let us know how we can help your business succeed.