How to Address Cybersecurity Personnel Shortages in Business Continuity Plans
The U.S. is seeing fewer cybersecurity workers join the market, adding only 250,000 more experts in 2020 and 2021. It is not enough to meet the demands of companies as launching a cyberattack becomes increasingly common. Some of the most common attacks involve ransomware, which holds computers hostage.
To stay safe, company leaders need to invest in business continuity plans. These kinds of plans help them handle incident management, minimizing the impact challenges can have on a company. Developing a plan to handle a cyberattack can save the company thousands of dollars.
Keep reading below to learn more about these plans and how they can help.
Cybersecurity Is a Cornerstone Of Companies
Company leaders don't invest in cybersecurity just to follow legal requirements. They invest in cybersecurity to protect the company. Without cybersecurity training and various protection programs, the company could be at risk.
Cyberattacks are devastating and can cost the company more than time and money. A cyberattack could damage the company's brand, threatening its trust with its clients, who may not believe the company can protect their information and will do business elsewhere.
No company is totally safe from a cyberattack. Hackers have targeted tech companies, industrial companies, retailers, and even cities. Their favorite kind of attack holds a computer system hostage unless the business pays thousands of dollars.
And even if businesses pay to regain access to the system, there is no guarantee they're completely safe. Hackers can leave backdoors on networks or continue spying on the company through hidden programs.
A Ransomware Cyberattack Can Topple a Business
Ransomware attacks are one of the most common kinds of attacks. It usually starts when an employee accidentally logs into a fake website or downloads a fake program. The program or website can look like an everyday utility like Microsoft Word or Facebook so that it can fly under their radar.
Once the malware is installed, it infects other parts of the computer. You may not realize it's there until it's too late. Once most files are infected, the real attack begins.
The malware locks people out of the computer system and displays a message. Usually, the message demands that the users pay money in cryptocurrency to reaccess the computers. It can also threaten to destroy information on the network, crippling the company's ability to work.
Most companies face a personnel shortage and don't have a team of cybersecurity experts to handle situations like these, so they may not know what to do. But even if they don't have cybersecurity workers on staff, they can still respond to cyberattacks.
Business Continuity Plans Can Mitigate Cybersecurity Threats
Business continuity plans are strategies that companies develop to overcome adversity. These are specific plans on how leadership and workers should respond to challenges in the business. These kinds of plans can also span various types of scenarios.
One of the most common kinds of situations they plan for is cyberattacks. These plans help companies act quickly and effectively, getting ahead of hackers after they launch an attack. If a company has a business continuity plan, it can efficiently respond to situations and protect assets.
Leaders can outsource plans to other companies to plan for incidents. These companies have experience creating detailed plans using advanced software, such as Agility Planner or RecoveryPlanner, that helps companies mitigate threats, including cybersecurity threats.
Act Quickly to Prevent More Damage
Usually, plans start by preventing the attack from spreading. Devices that appear uninfected may be disconnected from the network, and IT managers may sift through logs to see how the attack started. Meanwhile, plans usually call for company leaders to reach out for help.
They can reach out to the specific firms listed in the plan. These firms usually have cybersecurity professionals on staff who specialize in responding to cyberattacks.
Good continuity plans include specific information about these firms. They may have estimates as to the cost of their services and information about what they would need from the company.
Once the firm is contacted, plans may guide leaders on how to guarantee employee and client safety. They may sift through IT logs, looking for information that may have leaked. Leaders should then reach out to people at risk, notifying them of the incident and how the company is responding.
Business Continuity Creates Opportunities For Growth
Most continuity plans help businesses respond to situations without cybersecurity staff. The best plans that go above and beyond may include ways for the company to improve itself as it recovers from a cyberattack. For example, a plan may include a way to upgrade the business's technology.
The plan may show new computers and network infrastructure that the company can invest in. Why continue using the same old equipment if you can't even trust that it's safe to use? With that new technology, companies can be even more productive and recover faster.
The plan should include estimates on the cost of new equipment and a roadmap for how it can be installed.
Incident Management is a Core Part of Business Continuity
Cyberattacks are a frightening and stressful experience. Companies can easily panic, and leaders can get nervous as experts try to regain control of a network. Stress can get even worse during a shortage of professionals, when teams may not be able to act as quickly as they once could.
Plans should include ways for leaders to manage the situation as it unravels, including handling calls from journalists asking about the attack and ways to communicate with employees.
The plan may include resources and templates for emails that would need to be sent out. It should also list specific people responsible for different parts of the response. That way, nobody can get confused about their responsibilities to the company.
Leaders can use software from other companies to develop their plans. Tools like Agility Incident Manager help companies prepare for the worst, including cybersecurity threats.
Face the Cybersecurity Professional Shortage Bravely
Right now, cybersecurity professionals are in short supply. At the same time, hackers can launch a cyberattack with incredible ease using specialized software. They can take an entire computer system hostage with a simple ransomware attack.
The best way for companies to respond to cyberattacks is by having a business continuity plan. They help leaders with incident management, minimizing the damage an attack can have on a business.
To start developing a continuity plan, reach out to us here.