We have instant access to data anytime and anywhere. But this comes with a cost. Hackers can access our data using tactics like social engineering and artificial intelligence. One wrong click or revealing conversation, and you become the cause of a company-wide breach.
Typically, abnormal system activity can be a sign you were hacked. This may include anything from unexpected slow system performance to irregular network traffic patterns. These, at times, could include funny network activities like suspicious or unauthorized access, as well as strange spikes in network traffic.
If you think that your company’s data has been compromised, consider the following steps.
What to Do if You Suspect Your Company Data Has Been Hacked
Isolate and contain the breach
Find and disable all accounts and devices that the hacker might have accessed to keep them away from your system. Begin by disconnecting accounts and devices from your office’s net.
Ask your team to help identify the devices that were compromised. Hackers may have entered through a link one employee clicked in your office or through your organization’s Wi-Fi.
Establish an Incident Response Team
Any incident will result in a more straightforward and effective approach toward its resolution by an incident response team (IRT). An IRT could involve the IT department head together with the legal, communications, and senior management representatives in order to provide a comprehensive solution based on the magnitude of the incident.
Everyone should understand their role in your IRT. Together, your company’s IRT must enhance the safety of your information and coordinate between different teams. They can have a specific communication avenue for effective and safe sharing of information. For example, they may use messengers with end-to-end encryption or a designated email address.
Notify Relevant Authorities
Make sure to let your attorneys know about the breach if you have a legal team. They will help you figure out who to advise about your organization’s data breach. There might be cases where some stakeholders may consider filing lawsuits against you, claiming that you were responsible. With the relevant people, you will have an idea of what you should do following a breach.
You might also need to contact your local cybercrime departments and report the incident. This way, they can help you find the hackers.
Always be transparent and ready to work with authorities so you can assist the appropriate enforcers or team to determine the problem and control it.
How to Strengthen Your Company’s Security Measures
After having resolved the data incident, it is advisable to put mitigation strategies in place. Your company has to be proactive if it truly values its data. Here are three steps you can take to strengthen your business’ security measures:
Patch any vulnerabilities
Make it a point to fix and secure any of the weaknesses that allowed the breach to happen in the first place. After all, you want to take every measure to prevent being hacked again. You can do this by requiring your team to update their systems and software regularly.
Your team should also continually evaluate the security of any cloud service you use. You can never know which ones may face an attack, but a proactive approach to selecting a more secure cloud service can make all the difference.
Enhance employee training on cybersecurity awareness
Well-informed company employees can act as a first line of defense against cyber attacks and other threats to a company. You may outsource cybersecurity training through a learning management system provided by an outside firm. This can be an avenue for the employees to know more about enhancing cybersecurity in their homes and staying more alert at work.
Make sure to establish a team leader or a specialist to take charge of improving cybersecurity in your workplace. A professional with at least an online masters in cyber security can be helpful. They can prepare a bespoke plan for you and help you identify weaknesses in your system.
Update security policies and procedures
As such, your organization should constantly update its systems to prevent future cyber-attacks. You may also hire an in-house IT team experienced in cybersecurity or an agency that will be on the lookout for system upgrades. System improvement, such as the removal of bugs, can be done when a developer asks his user to upgrade to the latest system versions.
Your team or agency can also create protocols that will curb any future breaches. You must also ask them to install Internet of Things (IoT) equipment securely. Hackers can find their way into our offices through IoT devices that connect to the office’s network.
Protect Your Company’s Data
It is impractical not to employ technology in daily processes. However, together with the cybersecurity experts, your company can do what is required so that you can use technological resources with the least risk of hacking.
Remember, if you want to protect your data, having a vigilant team and taking a first approach is crucial. Cybersecurity lessons will make your company more resistant to cyberattacks or cybercriminal acts.