There have been many IT security breaches in the past few months. The latest major attack targeted Sony and involved the use of malware to extract sensitive information such as employee social security numbers, salaries, and copies of unreleased movies.
In light of these high profile and costly breaches, it is imperative to take proactive measures to minimize potential IT security threats. Here are a number of steps you can take to reduce your risk:
- Review your existing hardware and software systems to ensure they are running the appropriate versions and are updated with latest security patches.
- Conduct an independent assessment of your existing networks including firewalls and remote access systems. Periodic penetration testing (at least once a year) could identify potential vulnerabilities.
- Increase usage of encryption technologies to reduce the risks associated with exposing sensitive data such as social security numbers and other sensitive employee, product, and customer information.
- Make sure you have effective and updated backup and restore mechanisms. Test and validate them to ensure readiness in case of need.
- Review your existing internal and external user system access and control policies and procedures. Test and validate the controls to identify gaps and risk factors.
- Educate users on proper procedures, such as avoiding questionable web sites and being careful about the use of flash drives, to reduce introduction of infected applications onto the network.
- Make sure you have a business continuity plan in place in case of a security breach, so you would be able to maintain a reasonable degree of operations while dealing with the issue.
Lack of attention to properly managing your IT systems could result in severe loss of data and business harm. Contact Kreischer Miller’s Technology Solutions Group to arrange for a complimentary IT security risk assessment and guidance.
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