There’s more to business security than putting in place a firewall and some security software and hoping it wards off attacks and other threats. To achieve this, initial and ongoing testing has to happen and the follow-through thereafter is key.

Here’s how to determine if your business is really ready to combat threats and stay compliant.

 

Security Assessments

By first documenting the current practices you have outlined, and then providing improvement recommendations, you are empowered to mature your handling of information security to align with your operations.

This is the first step in identifying and fixing security issues and getting your business to a place where you can keep up with PCI, GLBA, HIPAA, and other regulatory guidelines you are responsible for adhering to on an ongoing basis.

These will give you an objective view of your existing technologies, controls and permissions, and policies ahead of any audits or impending initiatives.

 

Vulnerability Scanning

These identify areas of weakness like missing patches, outdated firmware, and misconfigured or defaulted IT equipment. From there, remediation plans can be put in place to give you steps to close those gaps in your business security.

Penetration Testing

A “Pen-test” will look for weak spots in your IT environment and then deliberately try to exploit them. These seek to find out how easily a hacker or malicious tools could access the data in your systems.

External Penetration Testing

How easy would it be for a remote attack to find its way into your internal network? Where are the gaps in your security perimeter and what paths might the attacks take to access servers, client information, and your own data and target individuals in your network.

Internal Penetration Testing

Although trust within the organization is paramount to success, we urge you not to underestimate the risk that breached confidentiality or integrity of your network poses to your business. An internal pen-test will simulate what an insider attack might look like. The attack actually comes from authorized access or starting somewhere within your network. Everything from administrator privileges to third party integrations are considered.

Web Application Penetration Testing

Just like with external pen-tests, this looks for exploits specifically in web apps like cross-site scripting, SQL injection, directory traversal, and that of the like.

 

Policy Development

No matter how large or small, you absolutely need documentation of comprehensive policies that address today’s ever-growing cybersecurity challenges. This might include BYOD (bring-your-own-device) policies, incident response plans, and third-party vendor management and guidelines for business relationships.

Does your organization have a WISP (Written Information Security Program)? This is often mandatory as part of your regulatory requirements. Regardless, we believe it can be a huge help in ensuring that your business security is kept up-to-date and actively maintained.

Security Awareness Training

To this day, your employees remain your weakest link and yet are your first line of defense against threats! Most malware and hacking happens when sites or email attachments successfully breach networks.

Find your organization a program that can stay current and keep your employees vigilant, while giving them a breadth of best practice tools to recognize and avoid the varieties of threats they might encounter day-to-day.

 

Cooperative Systems offers resources from the top to the bottom of this list, and we’re ready to help you.

Get in touch with us to learn your security posture and readiness going into 2018.