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Cyber Security: Asset management
Step 3 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers asset management, ensuring you know what data and systems you manage, and what business need they support.
Asset management encompasses the way you can establish and maintain the required knowledge of your assets. Over time, systems generally grow organically, and it can be hard to maintain an understanding of all the assets within your environment. Incidents can occur as the result of not fully understanding an environment, whether it is an unpatched service, an exposed cloud storage account or a mis-classified document. Ensuring you know about all of these assets is a fundamental precursor to being able to understand and address the resulting risks. Understanding when your systems will no longer be supported can help you to better plan for upgrades and replacements, to help avoid running vulnerable legacy systems.
Cyber Security: Architecture and configuration
Step 4 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers how to design, build and maintain systems securely.
The technology and cyber security landscape is constantly evolving. To address this, organisations need to ensure that good cyber security is baked into their systems and services from the outset, and that those systems and services can be maintained and updated to adapt effectively to emerging threats and risks.
Cyber Security: Incident management
Step 9 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers how to plan your response to cyber incidents in advance.
Incidents can have a huge impact on an organisation in terms of cost, productivity and reputation. However, good incident management will reduce the impact when they do happen. Being able to detect and quickly respond to incidents will help to prevent further damage, reducing the financial and operational impact. Managing the incident whilst in the media spotlight will reduce the reputational impact. Finally, applying what you’ve learned in the aftermath of an incident will mean you are better prepared for any future incidents.
Cyber Security: Vulnerability management
Step 5 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers how to keep your systems protected throughout their lifecycle.
The majority of cyber security incidents are the result of attackers exploiting publicly disclosed vulnerabilities to gain access to systems and networks. Attackers will, often indiscriminately, seek to exploit vulnerabilities as soon as they have been disclosed. So it is important (and essential for any systems that are exploitable from the internet) to install security updates as soon as possible to protect your organisation. Some vulnerabilities may be harder to fix, and a good vulnerability management process will help you understand which ones are most serious and need addressing first.
Cyber Security: Risk management
Step 1 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers the approach to risk management.
Taking risks is a natural part of doing business. Risk management informs decisions so that the right balance of threats and opportunities can be achieved to best deliver your business objectives. Risk management in the cyber security domain helps ensure that the technology, systems and information in your organisation are protected in the most appropriate way, and that resources are focussed on the things that matter most to your business. A good risk management approach will be embedded throughout your organisation and complement the way you manage other business risks.
Cyber Security: Supply chain security
Step 10 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers how and why it is sensible to collaborate with your suppliers and partners
Most organisations rely upon suppliers to deliver products, systems, and services. An attack on your suppliers can be just as damaging to you as one that directly targets your own organisation. Supply chains are often large and complex, and effectively securing the supply chain can be hard because vulnerabilities can be inherent, introduced or exploited at any point within it. The first step is to understand your supply chain, including commodity suppliers such cloud service providers and those suppliers you hold a bespoke contract with. Exercising influence where you can, and encouraging continuous improvement, will help improve security across your supply chain.
Cyber Security: Engagement and training
Step 2 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers the engagement and training of members from your organisation.
People should be at the heart of any cyber security strategy. Good security takes into account the way people work in practice, and doesn't get in the way of people getting their jobs done. People can also be one of your most effective resources in preventing incidents (or detecting when one has occurred), provided they are properly engaged and there is a positive cyber security culture which encourages them to speak up. Supporting your staff to obtain the skills and knowledge required to work securely is often done through the means of awareness or training. This not only helps protect your organisation, but also demonstrates that you value your staff, and recognise their importance to the business.
Cyber Security: Identity and access management
Step 6 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers how to control who and what can access your systems and data via identity and access management (IAM)
Access to data, systems and services need to be protected. Understanding who or what needs access, and under what conditions, is just as important as knowing who needs to be kept out. You must choose appropriate methods to establish and prove the identity of users, devices, or systems, with enough confidence to make access control decisions. A good approach to identity and access management will make it hard for attackers to pretend they are legitimate, whilst keeping it as simple as possible for legitimate users to access what they need.
Cyber Security: Data security
Step 7 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers the need to protect data where it is vulnerable.
Data needs to be protected from unauthorised access, modification, or deletion. This involves ensuring data is protected in transit, at rest, and at end of life (that is, effectively sanitising or destroying storage media after use). In many cases data will be outside your direct control, so it important to consider the protections that you can apply as well as the assurances you may need from third parties. With the rise in increasingly tailored ransomware attacks preventing organisations from accessing their systems and data stored on them, other relevant security measures should include maintaining up-to-date, isolated, offline backup copies of all important data
Cyber Security: Logging and monitoring
Step 8 from the 10 steps to Cyber Security covers how to design your systems to be able to detect and investigate incidents.
Collecting logs is essential to understand how your systems are being used and is the foundation of security (or protective) monitoring. In the event of a concern or potential security incident, good logging practices will allow you to retrospectively look at what has happened and understand the impact of the incident. Security monitoring takes this further and involves the active analysis of logging information to look for signs of known attacks or unusual system behaviour, enabling organisations to detect events that could be deemed as a security incident, and respond accordingly in order to minimise the impact.
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