In the age of everything digital where people continue to work in the office and at home, the importance of securing electronically stored files and information has reached a new peak. Hiscox Ltd, a London-based insurance company, released their annual cybersecurity report in September of this year, entitled “Hiscox Cyber Readiness Report 2022” (the “Report”). The Report assesses how prepared business are to back against data breaches and cybercrime. More than 5,000 corporate professionals Europe and North America were surveyed as part of the report.
Ahead of factors such as the pandemic, economic uncertainty, and labor and staffing shortages, the Report has identified cyberattacks as the biggest risk to businesses. Due to the increase in remote work and more cloud-sourced IT services, cyber-attacks are more of a possibility due to the wider net of storage that cloud-sourced services use. Finally, the Report emphasizes that large firms are not the only ones at risk—companies with revenues between $100,000 and $500,000 are now at the same risk level as those companies earning over $1,000,000 annually.
With the increase in cybercrime, there are a few best practices for businesses to prepare for potential breaches.
1. Implement a data security policy for the company to follow, including easy-to-follow plans that also educate the employees on the importance of security.
2. Use two-factor authentication for logins to ensure only authorized individuals are accessing the data stored by the company and its employees.
3. Use secure communications when any client information is involved. Encryption can also be used to further secure your information being sent. Emails and documents should never be sent unsecure to clients or third parties.
4. Have a plan for what happens if a breach does occur. If you experience a data breach, it is important to contain the breach and not let it spread to the rest of the company’s data. In order to do this, it is required that each employee be diligent in identifying data breaches so prompt action can be taken once a breach is identified. In the post-covid world, this step also includes having a plan for a national, or worldwide, disaster that requires different working conditions to ensure the company can operate effectively without needing to compromise their data.