Unfortunately, data breaches are a common cybersecurity event at small and large businesses, and any company operating for long enough should expect to have one occur. While SMBs should secure their network as much as possible and try to lower the risk of having their data stolen, when a data breach does occur, it can be a valuable learning experience. By preparing for and responding to data breaches with cybersecurity best practices in mind, SMBs can improve their overall cybersecurity posture and make their network more resilient to future attacks. In this article, we want to talk about ways businesses can respond to a data breach that will help improve the company’s overall security posture!
The moment it is clear that a data breach has occurred, SMBs should avoid making rash decisions and trust emergency response plans that have been put in place. These plans should emphasize gathering information on the incident, formulating effective responses to threat surfaces, and informing relevant parties what their responsibilities are for protecting company and client data. It is also important for the business to plan the best ways to record incident details and employee responses to the situation. This way, the actual steps taken to re-secure company data can be examined later and help guide emergency response plan improvements.
A key factor in responding to data breaches better is strong documentation. The day and time of incident discovery, how the breach was identified, and details about the affected systems and company devices are just a few examples of the information an SMB should be recording during a data breach. Gathering information on the systems that were involved in an attack and the employees that are directly related to the incident can provide valuable insight on how to improve employee training or augment the environment’s security posture to prevent future attacks. It is critical that as much information as possible is documented, especially during an SMBs first data breach.
After the business’ emergency plans have been followed accurately, incident information has been documented, and the company’s data has been re-secured, it’s time to analyze and assess the response to the data breach. More than just examining why a breach occurred and what data was stolen, companies should look into how effectively emergency plans were enacted and where those plans can be improved. This way, additional security solutions that can improve response times or provide better alert information to IT staff can be looked into, and employee training can be reviewed to ensure everyone is trained to effectively execute emergency plans as intended.
Data breaches are stressful events for SMBs because even a single mistake can mean the business closes its doors. However, this is why planning, documenting, and analyzing data breach events is crucial to improving the company’s resilience to attacks so that any future events can be handled more effectively. By starting to plan how your business responds to cybersecurity events early, employees can be more prepared for emergency situations. And when you need an IT consultant that can help assess your company’s readiness and response to a data breach, our team is ready to provide the high level of expertise you deserve to help ensure your business stays running well into the future!
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