The Extreme Importance of Being Proactive With Cybersecurity Threats

business IT services and security

Did you know that cyberattacks are considered to be one of the top risks that compromise global stability?

These breaches are the 5th most likely and 7th most impactful disasters for individuals, companies, and nations alike. This makes preventing data theft is more important than ever before.

It’s critical to take proactive measures against business IT services and security threats. Doing so will stop the theft of personal, company, and financial information.

Here, we’re going to talk about what proactive cybersecurity means for SMBs and how it differs from reactive measures. Read on to learn how you can be more preventative in combatting risks and what the impacts of proactivity are.

You should also be aware of how to match important cybersecurity tools to your risk profile and tolerance as outlined in this short video from Be Structured’s CEO, Chad Lauterbach.

The Problem With Reactive Cybersecurity

Most small organizations tend to take a reactive approach to cybersecurity. This is exactly what it sounds like- the company’s security team responds to a breach after it takes place. While there are plans in place for what to do after a breach, no action is taken until the network and data within it are already compromised.

This almost always leaves some disaster that needs to be dealt with after the attacker is fought off. The team begins to assess and clean up this damage after they can stop focusing on removing the threat.

Unfortunately, an average data breach costs a company around $3.86 million. Disaster recovery only takes effect after a lot of information and money are lost.

Employees’ personal and financial information may also be compromised in a breach. This can lead to identity theft and subsequent lawsuits even if you recover the lost data for your business.

What Are Proactive Cybersecurity Measures?

Proactive cybersecurity means that you don’t wait until a breach happens to take action. This form of protection is also called preventative cybersecurity. You implement procedures before there ever even is a threat.

Studies show that companies taking a proactive approach to cybersecurity have 53% fewer breaches than those that don’t. Investing in this mindset and these technologies pays off greatly.

Companies taking a proactive approach are constantly monitoring and reviewing network data. The intent is to ensure that there are no blips in regular network trends. They immediately examine any changes to proactively ensure that no malware or unauthorized users make their way onto the network.

Preventative cybersecurity enthusiasts also keep up with the latest technologies in the field. They implement, configure, and supervise both software and hardware that works to keep unauthorized users out of the system. The technologies do all of the heavy lifting to proactively stop threats from making their way into your system in the first place.

Some proactive technologies include:

  • Advanced firewalls that come pre-equipped with hardening services
  • Multifactor authentication technologies
  • Web content and email filtering
  • Active directory monitoring software
  • Intrusion prevention systems (IPS)
  • Identity access management
  • Security Information Event Management systems

These are only a few of the systems that you’ll need to implement to prevent threats from making their way onto your network.

Cybersecurity and the Cloud

There are a plethora of different types of Cloud technology. All Cloud storage systems are fairly secure on their own because data is stored in a heavily encrypted form. Additional features are also essential for maximum protection.

it’s important to implement preventative features. This is true whether you have a hosted private Cloud storage system, a hybrid model, or data stored on the public Cloud.

With the right provider, this is a challenge made easy. Experts that understand all of these systems will know exactly which solutions to implement. They also will know how to integrate them with your specific Cloud server.

Preventative Cybersecurity Implementation Challenges

As a business professional or company executive, you may worry about the challenges you’ll face when attempting to integrate these technologies into your existing platform. This is a fair concern, especially when you consider the time taken to implement these strategies.

For someone who isn’t an expert in IT, these technologies can take months to implement. During this long timeframe, you would be susceptible to breaches.

Hiring an in-house IT expert would make sense, but it also is extremely expensive. You’d need to train such an employee in your company policies and existing software. That could cost thousands of dollars in onboarding alone.

There are also so many technology systems that you need to implement. An in-house IT provider would struggle to integrate all of them together on their own.

That’s why there are so many benefits to partnering with a company that specializes in outsourced IT support services.

Outsourced Tech Support Companies: A Top-Notch Solution

Outsourcing your IT to a managed service provider in Los Angeles like Be Structured is the ideal method for implementation.

We not only know corporate networks like the back of our hands but also offer a Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP) approach. This means that we constantly will update your systems to ensure that you have the best possible cybersecurity features.

Our MSSP plan offers all of the technologies that we have previously discussed and more. We’re happy to provide an all-inclusive service package that offers data loss and intrusion prevention systems. These solutions are offered in addition to many more preventative software options.

Unlike other MSSP services, Be Structured also offers a huge number of additional services when you purchase our packages. These services include:

  • Solution research and integration
  • Management and updates for all security technologies
  • Managing both devices and logs
  • Automatic network audits and report generation
  • Consulting services with our experts
  • Training and education for those working with your network

If you’re looking to secure your Los Angeles business, make sure to consider these plans.

Aspects of Proactive Cybersecurity

Experts have many ways that they can implement preventative cybersecurity features for businesses. The first is internal and external penetration testing.

During these tests, an authorized user will simulate a cybersecurity breach. Ethical hackers install safe software that your network registers as malware and treats as such. Your team will then take measures needed to fight against this “malware” as it makes its way through your network.

This has many proactive benefits including:

  • Making sure that all company employees understand their role in combatting threats
  • Encouraging teamwork between those who are fighting against the threat
  • Helping you to understand how your Be Structured IT technicians can help you in the event of a cybersecurity disaster
  • Showcasing the technologies used during a breach (so your employees can familiarize themselves with how they actually work)
  • Generating data on how well those reacting did
  • Showcasing information on how reactions and reaction times can improve so that teams know what to focus on in training and in future tests

Knowing these things before a disaster arises ensures that everyone knows their place in the event of an emergency. There’s nothing more proactive than being prepared.

Behavior Indicator Studies

Earlier, we brushed on the idea of monitoring your network for hiccups in normal trends. Indicators of behavior (IoB) aim to understand how authorized users behave within the network. In addition to looking at human users, IoBs also look at the normal functions of applications and other software.

By understanding these normal behaviors, IoB software can pinpoint unusual activity. For example, if someone uses an external storage device to take data from the network, the IoB will understand that this isn’t normal behavior. It can then notify you and your outsourced IT provider of this activity so that you can monitor it.

More importantly, IoB technologies can take measures to prevent unusual activity automatically. It can change permissions and shut the user that’s engaging in these behaviors out of the system. It can also make alterations to the way that the network functions such as isolating individual devices or endpoints.

Zero Trust Approaches

Zero Trust is an increasingly common cybersecurity model. It requires verification and authorization for everything that goes on in a network.

Every device, application, and user needs to be verified before accessing information. The logic behind this is that no company should automatically trust a user simply because it got into its firewalls.

The bottom line of Zero Trust? Your SMB can trust nothing and no one until they prove themselves an authorized user or agent.

This makes a lot of sense considering the rise of data breaches in recent years. All unauthorized malware and users managed to make it behind the firewall and authentication systems of the company that they breached.

Proactive businesses will understand the importance of firewalls. However, they also will understand that firewalls aren’t impenetrable. Smart companies will take action based on this fact.

When you implement a Zero Trust model, you can lock the doors to your network before an unauthorized user even notices its existence. Make sure to talk to your MSSP provider about what this model entails and what technologies you’ll need to implement it. You won’t regret it.

The Benefits of Proactive Cybersecurity

The first reason to be proactive about cybersecurity is, of course, to save money. Even if your team is able to react to breaches quickly and minimize damages, there are still going to be some damages. A few thousand dollars can mean the difference between keeping your SMB’s doors open and being forced to close them.

This is also an optimistic figure that assumes that you don’t have a lot of data and your team reacts very fast. You need to be careful about cybersecurity so that a single breach doesn’t drive your business into the ground.

Constant Reaction Is Unnecessary

Trying to react to potential cybersecurity threats can be exhausting. Teams at reactive businesses will always be wondering when the next problem is going to occur. Knowing that there’s nothing that they can do until the crisis begins can take a mental toll.

Additionally, being unprepared when threats do arise puts employees in disaster mode. The need to put out fire after fire isn’t just anxiety-inducing but can lead to stress-induced mistakes. Remaining calm in the event of a disaster is essential to putting things right, and those who are in crisis mode won’t have that opportunity.

You Can Root Out Internal Sources of Breaches

Since 34% of data breaches come from within an organization, it’s crucial that you keep your eyes open for threats inside your company.

Reactive cybersecurity measures only find threats from unauthorized users that breach your system. On the flipside, proactive measures look into suspicious activities both from within and without.

If you see an employee making the same errors over and over or engaging in strange behaviors, you’ll know to keep an eye on them. This is imperative since you can find suspicious staff activity before they have a chance to attack your system from the inside.

You Can Improve Your Reputation

Having a proactive network installation and security system also allows your clients and customers to feel more confident in their decision to work with you. Since most SMBs store client information within their system, telling your clients about the security measures that you have will make them feel secure.

This can lead to people choosing to work with your business rather than your competitors. You’ll have more opportunities to grow and to get good reviews online, which can drive even more people through your doors.

Combat Cybersecurity Threats Today

Cybersecurity threats can cost businesses a lot of money. Whether your SMB has 20 or 500 employees, you might find yourself out millions of dollars after a breach. That’s why proactive prevention is crucial as you move into the new year.

We’re committed to providing you with the best MSSP solutions in the Los Angeles area. These services include IT support, cybersecurity tech implementation, and Cloud computing services. Contact our team to discuss proactive cybersecurity plans.

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.