In today’s digital landscape, corporations are tasked with the responsibility of safeguarding their data from ever-evolving cyber threats. Many corporations still fall prey to avoidable mistakes when it comes to cyber security. These types of errors can result in significant corporate reputational damage, financial losses, and legal ramifications.
In this article, we’ll delve into seven of the most common cyber security mistakes that corporations tend to make and we’ll explore the implications of such oversights. Through a thorough understanding of these pitfalls, corporations can take proactive steps towards implementing a robust cyber security framework, ultimately mitigating the risk of a potentially catastrophic data breach.
7 corporate information security mistakes to avoid
These mistakes are particularly likely to surface within smaller-to-medium sized business environments, as only 14% of SMBs are really prepared to defend themselves from threats, according to a recent Accenture report. Nonetheless, any enterprise may encounter these types of business issues.
1. Denial of common cyber threats. One of the most significant and most common corporate information security mistakes that organizations make consists of failing to believe that they could experience a cyber attack. In short, the problem is denial.
Medium-sized and smaller firms often read about cyber attacks directed towards larger enterprises and think that hackers wouldn’t be interested in their business. However, as many as 46% of all cyber breaches impact firms with fewer than 1,000 employees.
Hackers aren’t always particularly selective when it comes to the businesses that they target. And they’re particularly likely to target vulnerable firms, which are often those that are in denial about their vulnerabilities.
2. Neglect of regular software updates. IT administrators and others often delay software updates, as they can take a bit of time to install, and there never seems to be a convenient time during which to install them. However, routine software updates keep a business secure. They often resolve security weaknesses, address known threats, fix bugs, and improve the user experience.
Software updates prevent cyber criminals from undermining the corporate information security programs that an organization may have in-place. Ensure that your staff install software updates and patch systems in a timely manner. Doing so can save your organization time and money that you might otherwise need to spend on data recovery.
3. Reliance on anti-virus solutions. Within the modern threat landscape, relying on anti-virus technology alone is not enough. Anti-virus can only help protect an organization against known viruses. The reality is that cyber attackers create sophisticated, new attack methodologies everyday.
While traditional anti-virus solutions might identify common malware, these solutions can’t keep up with advanced adversaries who use stealthy intrusion techniques. The implementation of a network security approach will better protect your technology environment.
4. Reliance on outdated network models. Many small and mid-sized companies still use traditional network models, which have single entry and exit points, simple designs and depend on basic encryption models. A lack of easy scalability and lack of segmentation render businesses that rely on outdated network models particularly susceptible to cyber attacks.
In modern networks, local networks are segmented by function, meaning that they’re easily scalable and more secure than networks of yesteryear. Modern network standards that are based on fully virtualized WAN, zero-trust network access frameworks, and SASE have helped networks become ultra resilient.
5. Using on-premise solutions rather than cloud-based ones. While on-premise software solutions enable organizations to maintain a certain degree of control, they require in-house hardware, software licenses, integration capabilities and IT employees who can attend to any issues that may arise.
In contrast, a cloud environment gives organizations access to resources that are hosted on the premises of a service provider, and have few physical and virtual elements that act as possible malware entry points. In short, cloud solutions often provide superior security as compared to on-premises solutions.
6. Believing that phishing emails are easy to spot. Roughly 90% of data breaches occur on account of phishing. These days, phishing emails may look exactly like legitimate emails that come from a company, colleague or client. People can no longer rely on grammatical errors, phony images, and too-good-to-be-true promises to inform them of whether or not an email is legitimate. Instead, you need to turn to sophisticated email security solutions for assistance.
7. Failure to adopt a cyber security policy. Adequate corporate information security requires a clear cyber security policy, but roughly 60% of small businesses lack one.
A cyber security policy sets standards for cyber behavior within a given organization. Via a cyber security policy, you can provide guidelines around sharing information on social media, mobile device use, and password sharing. Absence of a cyber security policy increases the risk of a cyber attack, as employees will otherwise remain unaware of security best practices.
By taking steps to address these common missteps, corporations can enhance their overall cyber security posture and better safeguard their sensitive data and information.
Adopting a proactive and solutions-focused approach to cyber security will help corporations minimize the risk of cyber threats and ensure continued business success.
For more critical insights into corporate information security, please see CyberTalk.org’s past coverage. Lastly, to receive more cutting-edge cyber security news, best practices and analyses, please sign up for the CyberTalk.org newsletter.