A Moment of Cyber Introspection

This April, the SDI Team attended RSA 2018 in San Francisco. The gold standard of IT security conferences since 1991 when it started as a small cryptography meeting, RSA draws over 50,000 attendees and addresses today’s most pressing threats in cybersecurity. The SDI Team shares these insights picked up from the conference to assist you with the challenging task of creating a culture of cyber security throughout your organization:

Acknowledge where your cyber vulnerabilities lie today, and what they mean to your organization.
As last year’s WannaCry ransomware virus demonstrated, nation state cyber warfare has evolved to critical infrastructure disruption with life and death consequences. It is important to consider how your organization is prepared to respond and recover from such an event. The first step: acknowledging where you are in your cybersecurity efforts. Do you have a solid inventory of your assets and data? Are you operating significant legacy hardware and software with known vulnerabilities? When was your last assessment? What progress has been made to correct identified vulnerabilities? It’s time to take stock of the state of cybersecurity of organization’s IT infrastructure and take action.

Envision Cybersecurity Within Every Function of Your Organization.
Cybersecurity is a business requirement that permeates every aspect of your organization, not just management and the IT department. Cyber issues can’t be solved in a vacuum and companies and individuals need to work together. Consider the growth of insider threats and social engineering and the toll that each can take on your enterprise. Starting with executive buy-in, build a cross functional steering team to examine how each department can participate in prevention and response activities. Cyber awareness must be in the mindset of every employee.

Know the Who, What, Where and How’s of your Enterprise Data.
Most companies understand hardware/software security at a high level (PC antivirus and firewalls) and have an inventory of their hardware assets and purchased software products and licenses. Do you have a complete picture and understanding of your data – what is considered high-risk or critical, who has access, where is it stored, and how is it maintained? Data is the most valuable yet most vulnerable asset that companies own. Conducting an enterprise data assessment with cyber objectives – and/or hiring a data curator – will not only help your business users to manage data more effectively but strengthen your organization’s defensive cyber posture.

Interesting Factoid: The name RSA refers to the public-key encryption technology developed RSA Data Security, Inc., which was founded in 1982. The abbreviation stands for Rivest, Shamir, and Adleman, the inventors of the technique.

Realize That There is No Silver Bullet and You Can’t Spend your Way Out of Danger.
Companies need to shift their thinking away from adding security hardware to solve their cybersecurity issues. An effective cyber approach is multi-layered and can include hardware, software, appliance/devices, audits, policies/procedures development, education and other business process development. Determining the proper mix and how these components fit into your overall security framework is necessary to maintain resiliency and spend time, funds, and talent wisely. A well-developed cyber strategy will consider the components above and keep your organization focused and efficient.

Remediation. Every. Day.
Effective cyber programs require diligence – consistent efforts on a constant basis. It’s smaller tasks (timely patching) through significant lifting (think legacy systems upgrades). It can be overwhelming, even if resources and budgets weren’t compounding the problem. Taking an incremental approach can deliver results – and sanity. Divvying up your cybersecurity remediation task list into 1% increments, these smaller achievements add up to meaningful change. Bottomline: continuous process is better than delayed perfection.

SDI is committed to the resiliency of our clients’ mission critical systems. Our Team stands ready to assist you with initiating a cyber security audit, hardening your existing security posture, or responding to a cyber incident. SDI orchestrates a multi-layered incident response to address the different technologies, devices, and data impacted by a cyber breach. SDI’s cyber response teams are certified in leading industry technologies (MS, Cisco, Oracle) and NIST-based remediation best practices to quickly detect, contain breaches, and restore operations.

Contact us to launch the SDI cyber team within your organization.