A successful security strategy will not only protect employee information, reduce threats and maintain the organisation reputation but it will also ensure security is a top priority for all executives and employees.
Security should be built into the culture of an organisation, and that should be felt all the way through the implementation of a security plan.
CIO UK looks at the 19 steps businesses should take when implementing a successful security strategy.
Read next: 7 of the best security tools for your home office
January 24, 2018
Implementing a security plan in the right way is, of course, crucial, but before you begin you'll need to establish what your priorities are.
There's no benefit to going in full steam ahead if you've not recognised areas of concern or aspects of the business that could be a weak link and need extra attention.
Creating a document, perhaps a timeline of projected milestones and priorities is great for keeping on track and establishing goals ahead of time.
This can be sent to the team so employees and colleagues aren't left in the dark.
Knowing what's important will mean you can let smaller issues that crop up along the way go, and focus your time on the valuable stuff.
3. Security measures and controls
Businesses should have basic security measures in place to keep its data, employees and customers safe online. Simple measures such as creating strong usernames and passwords can go a long way to help secure your business.
Barclay Group Security CIO, Elena Kvochko wrote in CIO UK that businesses need to implement strong measures at every level of the organisation to achieve true end-to-end security.
“The need for end-to-end security has given rise to the proliferation of security products,” she wrote. “After all, a business can only be as secure as its weakest link. It is the right tools and processes together that help enable teams to predict, prevent, protect, react, and recover from security incidents.”
4. Protect files from unauthorised access
Rarely a week goes by without a business having suffered a data making the headlines.
In 2017, Pizza Hut revealed its website and app was hacked with 60,000 customers being impacted by a security breach. The hack had seen personal information such as email addresses, bank details and home addresses being stolen. And late last year Yahoo as forced to disclose that as many as 3 billion of its email accounts might have been compromised.
If data breaches are a matter of ‘when’ not ‘if, CIOs and system administration should take steps to ensure they are detected quickly.
Two-factor password authentication, menawhile can be a cost-effective way to reduce risk from weak passwords while also educating employees on security concerns.
Ascential CIO Sean Harley says: “We are reducing the risk of people choosing simple passwords, we worked with the technical team to implement a single sign-on solution.”
8. Monitor access
Network monitoring systems help admins understand what is going on in their network.
A network must be able to collect, process and present data with information being analysed on the current status and performance on the devices connected.
Microsoft Network Monitor, Nagios and OpenNMS are just a few monitoring tools that allow you to view and monitor network traffic. These tools can help ensure that your systems, applications and servers are up and running as they are supposed to.
If a detection system suspects a potential breach it can send an email alert - based on the type of activity it has identified.
Antivirus software can monitor traffic and detect signs of malicious activity. These tools look for specific patterns such as byte sequences in network traffic or multiple log in attempts.
Ascential CIO Sean Harley says: “We focused even more heavily on information security. This has required the implementation/review of new/existing processes such as checking of our monitoring and logs for anomalies that could indicate compromise or potential threats, culminating in a new threat and vulnerability assessment which is reported to our executive team on a weekly basis.”