Recent statistics show that global cyber crimes will create over $6 trillion in damages for companies before 2021 is over. These damages will grow by 15 percent every year over the next five years and eventually total $10.5 trillion.

If you’re concerned that network defense costs will overrun your IT budget, then worry no more. Check out our guide on how to prevent cyber-attacks using a layered security approach. We’ll help you save money and protect your network from cyber threats.

What Is Cyber Security?

The art of protecting your business’s online systems from any outside cyber-attack is known as cyber security. This includes protecting all mobile devices (i.e., phones, tablets, laptops) that you and your team use.

Data breaches are a form of cyber risk. Hackers will try to gain access to your sensitive company and customer data. This information can include names, addresses and even credit card information.

How to Prevent Cyber Attacks

Despite this potential for invasion, there is a way to prevent cyber attacks known as a layered security approach.

What is a Layered Security Approach?

If hackers breach a single security level in your system, there are other layers in place to protect your company’s digital assets. Each layer of security works together to ensure protection if another layer fails.

You’ll find three different layered security levels hard at work safeguarding your data. These exist at the technical, physical, and administrative levels.

Layer 1) Technical Security

The technical security layer includes hardware and software-based security solutions. These solutions can stop unauthorized access to your network. Examples of technical layers include:

  • Network Security –This security layer protects your entire network. It also protects the data that it stores. This layer includes administrative and technical security. Having policies that limit network user behavior is the best way to promote administrative security. Technical security protects your data stored on the network. You can identify your baseline level of security with a network security assessment that identifies any existing vulnerabilities in your network.
  • Web Gateway Security – You’ve no doubt heard of “the cloud” but did you also know that it’s another great way to protect your network? Web gateway security uses a cloud-based detection system that protects your email servers from spam emails, viruses and ransomware.
  • Firewalls – Think of your firewall as a “tunnel” that protects your data while it travels to its end destination. These tunnels can protect your data against unauthorized users who try to intercept your information. A security incident and event management (SIEM) log helps you review this path through all your protected devices.
  • Current Software on All Devices and Networks – It is best practice to have updated security software on all company devices. The latest software includes updates that protect your data from phishing attacks or ransomware. Be sure that all mobile devices are also running current software. The updated security on mobile device software protects sensitive data when you use it on a public network.
  • Passwords and Login Authentications – Be sure to provide staff with their own unique, strong passwords and don’t forget to enable multi-factor authentication. Multi-factor authentication requires an employee to use an added log-in credential along with their secured password.
  • Data Backup – Data backup is important in case you need to recover them when the original files get lost. Data backup security also means backing up company data in addition to operating systems and databases as well. Back up your HR files and accounts receivable/payable records. Be sure to encrypt these files when they’re at rest as well as when they’re sent through email.
  • Endpoint Detection – Did you know all end-user devices (i.e., mobile phones, laptops, and desktops) create access points for hackers to try and infect your network with malware or viruses? Endpoint security detection can automatically monitor activity between your devices and network. With Ontech Managed Security, in the event that unusual events are detected, it’s backed by a security operations center (SOC) who monitors threats 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Ontech Managed Security offers detailed threat intelligence reports, daily updates, and other important metrics. They even provide a $1M warranty to cover costs for ransomware in the unlikely chance it is unable to protect or remediate an issue.

Layer 2) Physical Access

In addition to cyber threats in the digital world, real-world protection in the physical world is also needed to protect data, hardware, and software from physical damage.

This layer of security might involve adding building controls to limit door, wall, or gate access to prevent unauthorized access. Interior controls include ID card scanners to confirm the identity of an individual. Laptop and mobile devices should also be secured when not in use.

Layer 3) Administrative Security

Most businesses have records that not all staff members are allowed to see such as sensitive employee files or future expansion plans.

Administrative security defines methods for controlling access to these records. This type of security might include:

  • Cyber Security Plan – A cyber security plan can detail your strategy for protecting data assets along with policies and procedures in educating employees about their obligations for protecting these assets. This plan should clearly define employee levels of access and include education on how to avoid becoming victim to a cyber-attack.
  • Security Awareness Training – Many businesses are adopting security awareness training as part of their overall cyber security plan. This security solution offers detailed training and tests to educate employees on the current state of cyber threats. Many free training sources are also available online. The National Initiative for Cyber Security Careers and Studies (NICCS) provides a variety of resources.
  • Individual User Accounts – Any employee who can access your system’s data should have their own user account. It’s also best practice to minimize using privileged accounts such as an administrator account.
  • Dark Web Research – The dark web has become the premier platform for buying and selling illegal products, which frequently includes stolen account passwords. Some managed security solutions include dark web monitoring which be incredibly helpful. Also known as cyber monitoring, dark web monitoring is an identity theft prevention solution that allows you to monitor your identity on the dark web. If your information is found, you will be notified immediately.

Ready to Protect Your Network?

If you want to learn more about how to prevent cyber-attacks, just give Ontech Systems a call at 262-522-8560. You can also request a free network discovery.

Our technicians will identify any high-risk vulnerabilities they see within your business and make recommendations on ways to strengthen your network. Call us today!

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