Knowing there’s a need to address cybersecurity and making the right decisions about how much money to invest and on what is one of the top challenges today’s small businesses face. With the threat landscape constantly evolving, the following cybersecurity tips can help SMBs make the shift to a more proactive risk-based approach.

1. Understand your company’s threat profile – Undertaking a detailed risk evaluation adapted to your business activities and infrastructure is the starting point. Profiling and scoring your risk and the attack types your business will face will help provide insight into what cybersecurity solutions should top your investment list.

Unfortunately, research shows that all too often small businesses throw money at the latest and most highly publicized security solutions without knowing how to properly utilize them or properly configuring the security solution. Also SMBs don’t have the inhouse expertise to continuously monitor and tweak the solution has things change which can make the solution less effective.

2. Get outside help – Bringing in external expertise to evaluate and benchmark your company’s security posture against similar businesses operating in the same market will help verify if information security policies and plans are appropriate to the identified threat risk profile.

3. Consider cyber liability insurance – Utilizing experts to conduct a detailed evaluation of your business cyber liability insurance coverage to ensure it is adequate will also help to highlight ways in which doing security better could deliver additional commercial benefits – like a lower premium. Gaining full visibility into the cyber health of your business network and documenting the security measures and controls in place can help you identify where you need additional coverage for crucial areas.

4. Evaluate, check and review – Perform regular risk audits to reassess the current state of your network, evaluating the impact of any changes such as the implementation of new technologies. This activity should be complemented by periodic testing of disaster recovery and business continuity plans to ensure everything is in place and works as expected, to mitigate the potential damage resulting from a cyber breach.

5. Take steps to protect against insider threats – Malicious insiders are the leading cause of data breaches, so putting in place programs to monitor users’ behavior is vital. Instituting good information management practices that include mobile device management, network monitoring and access control management will help eliminate the potential risk of negligence by naïve employees.

The very important thing to keep in mind is to remember the cybersecurity it no longer just an IT issue. It is a company issue and all parties from employee’s to the CEO need to be involved.

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