13 Steps to Ensure Cybersecurity Compliance for Your Company

cybersecurity compliance

Cyberattacks are on the rise-increasing globally by 7% in Q1 2023. Cybersecurity has become an essential concern for companies of all sizes.

The consequences of a breach can be devastating. This can range from financial losses and reputational damage to legal liabilities.

It is imperative for organizations to prioritize cybersecurity compliance. They must protect their sensitive data, and intellectual property, and maintain customer trust. To learn what your company can do, read our listicle below.

1. Understand the Regulatory Landscape

It’s crucial to first understand the relevant laws and regulations governing your industry. This will largely depend on your location and the nature of your business.

You may need to adhere to certain cybersecurity compliance protocols like:

  • GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation)
  • HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act)
  • CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act)

Failure to comply with these regulations can lead to severe penalties and legal ramifications.

2. Conduct a Cybersecurity Risk Assessment

The foundation of your cybersecurity compliance strategy will be performing a thorough risk assessment. This helps to see any potential threats, vulnerabilities, and the impact of security breaches on your business.

Important factors to consider include:

  • The type of data you handle
  • Your network infrastructure
  • The security protocols in place

Any areas in need of immediate attention can be handled. You can now allocate resources more effectively.

3. Develop a Comprehensive Cybersecurity Policy

You will need a well-crafted cybersecurity policy. This will serve as a roadmap for your organization’s security efforts.

It should encompass:

  • Guidelines on data protection
  • Employee access controls
  • Incident response procedures
  • Acceptable use of company resources

To ensure that the policy aligns with the unique needs of your company, be sure to involve stakeholders in the process.

4. Employee Training and Awareness

Employees are often the weakest link in an organization’s cybersecurity defense. Conduct regular training sessions to educate your staff about potential cyber threats, phishing attacks, and the importance of following security best practices.

5. Implement Strong Access Controls

To maintain cybersecurity compliance, you’ll also want to limit access to sensitive data. If an employee leaves the company or changes roles, promptly revoke access.

Here are some steps to get started:

Contact your local IT support to get everything set up properly.

6. Regularly Update and Patch Systems

To take your team’s cybersecurity to the next level, think like a hacker. Many know that they can exploit known vulnerabilities in outdated software and operating systems.

For this reason, regularly update and patch all your systems and applications. This will help to protect yourself from potential attacks.

7. Secure Network Perimeters

Protecting your network perimeter is vital in preventing unauthorized access.

Deploy and monitor:

  • Firewalls
  • Intrusion detection systems
  • Intrusion prevention systems

Regularly review and update these security measures to stay ahead of emerging threats.

8. Encrypt Sensitive Data

You want to ensure that all data is encrypted. In the event of a breach, encrypted data remains incomprehensible to unauthorized parties. This minimizes the potential impact of the attack.

9. Regularly Monitor and Audit Security Measures

Continuous monitoring and auditing processes must be implemented as well. Real-time monitoring helps identify suspicious activities and potential threats early. This allows your team to respond promptly and minimizes the damage.

10. Incident Response Plan

No matter how robust your cybersecurity measures are, there is always a possibility of a breach. Your comprehensive incident response plan should outline the immediate actions to be taken in case of a cyber attack.

Test this plan regularly through simulated exercises to ensure a swift and coordinated response in a real-world scenario.

11. Regularly Review and Update Policies

Cybersecurity compliance evolves rapidly. What works today may not be sufficient tomorrow. This is why it’s imperative to update your cybersecurity policies regularly.

This will help you to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to emerging threats. You’ll be more equipped to comply with any changes in relevant regulations.

Engage with cybersecurity experts and stay informed about the latest industry best practices.

12. Secure Third-Party Relationships

Many businesses rely on third-party vendors and partners for various services, such as cloud storage, software development, or data processing. These relationships can also pose cybersecurity risks.

Ensure that your third-party partners maintain a high level of security and comply with the same standards you expect from your own organization. Include specific cybersecurity requirements in your contracts and regularly audit their compliance to mitigate potential risks.

13. Foster a Culture of Cybersecurity

Encourage a culture of cybersecurity. Make sure everyone understands their role in safeguarding sensitive information.

You want your employees to report any suspicious activity promptly. Make it clear that cybersecurity is a shared responsibility across all levels.  Acknowledge and reward individuals who adhere to security best practices and contribute to the overall safety of the organization.

Cybersecurity Compliance Starts With You

Most cybersecurity providers in Los Angeles will tell you that cybersecurity compliance is not a one-time task-it’s an ongoing journey. Adopt a proactive and comprehensive approach. Doing so will help to minimize the risk of data breaches and protect sensitive intel.

The longevity and success of your business depends on this. The digital age is an ever-evolving thing, so do your best to stay ahead of the curve.

The good news is that you’re not alone in the process. Our IT support company will work with you every step of the way.

If you are in need of cybersecurity, do not hesitate to contact Be Structured Technology Group. Your business is depending on you to make the right call.

About Chad Lauterbach

CEO at Be Structured Technology Group, Inc. a Los Angeles based provider of Managed IT Services for small business. I desire to help small businesses better utilize technology by assisting in high level planning to make sure that new systems will benefit them both operationally and financially. I am careful to implement and support systems using industry best practices.