Is My Cybersecurity at Risk Right Now?

Digital Cloud Security Background Concept

 

The importance of cybersecurity rose significantly in the last few years. As we rely on technology tools to transact business, store sensitive personal data, or simply to communicate with others across the Internet, we become more vulnerable to cyber-attacks. How do you know if your cybersecurity is at risk right now?

 

At Home

Cybersecurity begins at home with a secure Wifi connection. But how do you know if your Wifi is secure? Here are some tips:

  • Attempt to connect a new device to your Wifi. If you are not prompted to enter a security code, you know your Wifi is open and unsecured. Protect your Wifi connection with a unique, complex password and a secure encryption method.
  • Use an online testing tool to ensure your router settings prevent hacking attempts.
  • Ensure your firewall, your first line defense against hackers and malware, is operating successfully. Your computer comes with a firewall, but you may want to upgrade to a more robust product.

Contact a service who can examine your firewall for vulnerabilities.

 

At the Office

In today’s environment “office” may describe a room in your house or a table at the corner Starbuck’s. If you work remotely, ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I keeping my work and personal devices separate?
  • Am I using a VPN connection to access my employer’s network?
  • Am I using strong passwords?

As an employer, you have a responsibility to your employees and your customers to protect their data and the IT systems supporting that information. Your inhouse IT department should perform a cyber risk assessment to determine the level of risk you face and then determine how to mitigate those risks. 

 

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the U.S. Department of Commerce developed a framework for assessing cybersecurity risk. NIST describes their framework as “voluntary guidance, based on existing standards, guidelines, and practices for organizations to better manage and reduce cybersecurity risk.”

 

Using the NIST’s risk assessment or developing one for your specific system, you should determine the importance of the kinds of data you collect and store, the assets you want to evaluate, the various threats to your cybersecurity, and the likelihood those threats will result in a cyber breach. Your IT team should review the current controls and determine what changes to implement to tighten security. You must evaluate these improvements on a cost/benefit basis. 

 

Your IT team may not have the time or tools to do a proper assessment. Consider contracting with a managed IT service like the professionals at JMA Consulting. They have the expertise and tools to perform a cybersecurity assessment and help you make the adjustments to mitigate your cybersecurity risk.