A business’s data and online assets are its most prized possessions, and they’re highly targeted by hackers with various intentions. In an online business environment that’s constantly doubling down on the importance of cybersecurity in all its shapes and forms, many business owners feel overwhelmed.
No matter the size of your business, you don’t have to become a cybersecurity expert to protect it. You only need to learn the basics of security stacking so you invest in the right cybersecurity software and can implement the right security protocols.
Basics of Security Stacking
A security stack is a set of tools, guidelines, technologies, and platforms integrated into the network or system it protects. The stack can vary in complexity depending on the sensitivity of the data it’s protecting and the threats it’s up against.
A security stack needs to correspond to external factors such as the business’s size, which often ties directly to the number of access points and the amount of data that needs protection. Most importantly, a security stack must have just the right level of complexity for the team using it. Otherwise, it’d become too hard to manage and control, even for seasoned cybersecurity experts.
How Security Stacks Can Prevent Cyberattacks
A complete security stack needs to cover all of your business’s assets. To act effectively, a security stack needs to protect your cloud environment, network, endpoints, identity, and infrastructure. To achieve that, a variety of equipment and software come in handy, including:
- Anti-malware Software– It’s responsible for detecting and preventing malware attacks, including spyware and ransomware.
- Encryption– Data leaving the network needs to be securely encrypted to ensure privacy.
- Endpoint Protection Software– Endpoints are the access points to a system and need constant protection and monitoring using endpoint detection and response
- Access Control– Controlling file and data access depending on the employees’ ranks would reduce the risks of insider attacks and the spread of an attack if it entered from a limited-access endpoint.
- Threat Hunting– Threat hunting technology continuously searches through your network and files looking for dormant ransomware or spyware and fileless malware.
These tools each protect a specific part of your business online. “Stacking” them together ensures an all-encompassing security system that protects your business from most attacks.
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Building Your Security Stack
Building your business a security stack from scratch isn’t about getting the most advanced and expensive software on the market. There are multiple aspects to look into, such as:
- Physical Security of System and Hardware– Ensure physical devices with access to your network are secure from theft. That can include preventing most employees from taking home their work laptops or phones unless necessary and implementing security measures for your office space and server locations.
- Network Perimeter Security– Have a private company network for employees to communicate instead of using a public network. When you need to use a public network, mask your presence by using a secure VPN. Make sure to use one of the current top-rated enterprise endpoint security platforms to secure and monitor all access points.
- Internal Communications Security– Use an internal private network instead of a public one. Employ the use of encryption in your emails and limit open communication between the staff of different departments that don’t need constant contact.
- Incident Responses– Have an incident response plan (IRP) ready in case of an attack. It should include who to communicate from your cyber-insurance company to your backup provider and IT team. Implementing network segmentation will allow you to isolate the infected area and prevent further spread.
Additional Security Measures
If your IT team isn’t large enough to implement complex stacks or if you don’t have an in-house IT team, there are ways you can employ outside assistance, including:
- Hire a Cybersecurity Company– Consider hiring a security service provider to develop and implement your security stack.
- Offer Staff Cybersecurity Training– Training your current staff in cybersecurity will ensure they make fewer mistakes that could jeopardize your business’s safety.
- Update Passwords Frequently– Passwords need to be complex and hard to guess and must be changed every 30 to 90 days.
- Use Multi-factor Authentication– Using MFA acts as an additional security measure when passwords fail.
Start Small and Build Up
Taking the first step into cybersecurity doesn’t have to be a grand step. Start by using the resources you can get your hands on, from what your staff can do, to what service providers offer that’s within your budget. Gradually, you can add more layers of protection to your security stack until you reach the desired level of safety.