The cyberworld operates at a rapid pace. A market offering introduced one year can get obsolete the next. Similarly, an unpredicted trend can become all the rage all of a sudden. In the context of the digital world’s light-speed dynamics, the requirements of organizational cybersecurity in 2021 might be slightly different than in previous years.
Like all other areas of life, the pandemic has also affected the digital landscape. Organizations all over the world have experienced more cyber attacks in the wake of the pandemic. Cybercrime syndicates and individual actors have exploited the unprecedented situation to infect networks and steal data from both business entities and individual users.
While the pandemic is still here and cybercriminals are only getting stronger, organizations need to revise/update their cybersecurity measures. In this post, we will discuss some measures that every business can consider to beef up its organizational cybersecurity in 2021 irrespective of its size and scope.
Organizational Cybersecurity in 2021: 4 Things to Consider
Take the following measures into consideration if you are looking to improve and strengthen your organizational cybersecurity in 2021.
1. Replace Passwords with Passphrases
Compromised login credentials are still the biggest reason behind illicit network infiltrations and data loss. Despite all the awareness about setting strong passwords and keeping them safe, cybercriminals somehow find a way to steal/neutralize them.
Over the years, they have come up with many options to steal or crack user passwords. There are many hacks that cybercriminals successfully use to crack even complex and strong passwords, like phishing, brute-force attacks, keystroke logging, and dictionary attacks.
If you have already been a victim of password steal/crack and don’t want a repeat, you should move to passphrases. A passphrase is a string of 16 or more characters you can use in place of passwords for all your critical login gateways. You don’t need to create complex and ultra-cryptic passphrases. Just take care of these couple of things when making one.
- It should be a mix of upper and lower case characters along with numbers and special characters.
- A passphrase should not be a commonly-used phrase.
- It should not be part of any business communication, operational details, etc.
Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
Setting up a passphrase is an effective option against brute-force attacks and keystroke logging steals. However, what if the passphrase gets stolen without the knowledge of the concerned parties? You can’t do much about a stolen password or passphrase if you don’t know it has been compromised.
To get around this issue, you should integrate multi-factor authentication using phone numbers, email, and mobile apps for the login gateways of critical accounts and systems. It is important to mention here that deploying multi-factor or two-factor authentication is not an expensive solution anymore. In today’s world, everyone must be using multi-factor authentication to protect their accounts against compromised logins.
2. Isolate Your Organizational Network – Physically and Virtually
Do you know why a conventional magnetic hard disk or an offline computer with no storage and connecting peripherals is still the safest device?
They are foolproof against cybercriminal activity because they are physically and virtually isolated. One can’t achieve this level of isolation for business networks. Nonetheless, you should try to make your network as virtually and physically isolated as possible. These are some steps you can take to isolate your network.
- Make a policy that no one in the organization can connect any external devices to the organizational workstations. These devices include flash drives, external hard drives, mobile phones, and card readers.
- Don’t enable Wi-Fi on the internet that runs the organizational network. If you have to provide wireless internet to employees and visitors, do it through an entirely separate ISP.
- Keep reminding your employees that organizational networks should not be used for private browsing.
- Create a list of popular blacklisted websites and get them blocked on your network using the firewall with threat protection management.
3. Introduce Cloud Monitoring to Your Cybersecurity Regimen
If your organization uses virtual machines/networks or cloud storage, you need to introduce cloud monitoring in your cybersecurity routine. Cloud monitoring has emerged as an integral part of security measures for organizations that boast a substantial cloud-based infrastructure.
This monitoring involves reviewing, monitoring, and observing your organization’s operational workflow on the cloud network. With cloud monitoring, you can keep tabs on the footfalls in your cloud environment. Moreover, it can also help you maintain the data integrity of your cloud-based storage.
With robust monitoring in place, you can identify any data tampering or unauthorized data entry with ease. Cloud monitoring is still a relatively new concept. If you need some help in understanding and implementing it, get any good IT MSP on board.
4. Conduct a Business Continuity Test
There are many instances of businesses falling victim to cyberattacks despite taking all the security measures. Therefore, a good practice is to be always prepared for an inevitable cyber casualty. A business continuity test is an effective way to assess your preparedness in the wake of a cyber attack. If it is still not part of your security routine, it should be there in your plans for organizational cybersecurity in 2021.
A business continuity test will tell how your organization will be able to perform right after any adverse cyber event.
You will need dedicated cybersecurity experts to conduct a comprehensive business continuity test. A well-planned continuity test will help you in:
- Checking the robustness of the newly implemented cybersecurity measures
- Identifying the loopholes and weak links in the overall network security
- The estimated downtime your organization would incur in case of a cyber attack
- The preparedness of your staff in handling the situation
We hope that the discussion above helps you devise a conclusive regimen for organizational cybersecurity in 2021. If you want help with the understanding and implementation of these measures, get in touch with Microsys. Our mission is to deliver affordable and high-quality technology solutions that enable small, medium, and enterprise businesses to meet their goals more efficiently. We can assist your small-to-medium scale enterprise in improving its cybersecurity in comparison to previous years.