The leaves are falling, pumpkins are filling patches, and soon the creepy crawlies will be making their way around your town. It is officially October, and that means it’s Cyber Security Awareness Month. It’s the time of year when we need to remember and reinvigorate our efforts to achieve greater awareness of the threats and risks posed by malicious digital activity.
Cybercriminals don’t care if it’s Halloween or some other festivity; they continue to prowl in the darkest corners online. This is why staying vigilant of threats and being aware of the cyber security landscape is important.
In 2003, October was identified as National Cyber Security Awareness Month—now known as Cyber Security Awareness Month. This initiative was started by the Cyber Security and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) to spread awareness about the significance of cyber security, helping everyone stay more safe and secure online. In the last 18 years, both CISA and NCSA have encouraged organizations and individuals to take proactive measures to improve cyber security.
Word of Advice: Follow These 5 Tips
We have some tips for you to follow and keep your cyber security awareness game on point.
Focus on Cyber Innovation
In a time when adversaries are persistently modifying their tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to launch sophisticated attacks, organizations must focus on cyber innovation. They need to think out of the box and leverage technology-driven solutions that can help them streamline their cyber security operations and fill the gaps in their security postures.
It’s time for you to think about next-gen technologies such as Virtual Cyber Fusion Center (vCFC) that combines threat intelligence with security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR), while eliminating siloization of security teams, driving collaboration and threat visibility across your security apparatus. Such technology can enable your security teams to continuously gauge and calibrate their strategies based on the predominant threat ecosystem. If you want to improve threat visibility and threat response capabilities, you must upgrade your security infrastructure to vCFC. This approach amalgamates different security functions on a single platform to boost collaboration between siloed security teams. On the other hand, it also provides SOAR capabilities that enable you to create automated, cross-functional workflows that can orchestrate security and response actions across different deployment environments. By using a next-gen SOAR capability of a vCFC, you can quickly respond to threats and reduce the time spent on manual processes.
Promote Threat Intel Sharing
While cyber security experts strive to improve their security posture, threats continue to evolve. In such cases, if one organization identifies a threat, its peers can take lessons from the incident and stop it from impacting them. This can only become a reality with threat intelligence sharing.
As an organization, you must adopt and encourage threat intelligence sharing with your sectoral peers, information sharing community members, vendors, and other stakeholders with similar security interests as it drives contextual threat visibility to transmit, receive, and access threat information in real-time. This will improve their ability to quickly identify, comprehend and respond to threats.
Sharing is caring. Absolutely. Sharing makes the threat intel accessible and operational, broadening every participating organization’s knowledge about assets, adversaries, indicators of compromise (IOCs), TTPs, and much more. It raises awareness about incidents as they occur and also helps in minimizing the response time. Moreover, organizations must leverage advanced threat intelligence platforms (TIPs) to enrich and contextualize threat information ingested from multiple trusted sources in real-time.
Take Threat Response Seriously
For most organizations, incident response means containing incidents. Thanks to the advanced technologies, they can now move beyond incident response and instead focus on threat response that covers more prominent aspects of the threat domain such as vulnerabilities, malware, and threat actors. Organizations must leverage modern-day threat response platforms to help them connect the dots between different incidents and threats. Such platforms can drive security operations with the help of real-time threat intelligence and security orchestration and automation processes. This will allow security teams to tackle threats before they become cyberattacks.
Foster Collective Defense
The rise of sophisticated and nation-state threat actors continues to target the government as well as private organizations. In such a complex threat landscape, the traditional approach to cyber security does not come up to scratch. You need to take a collective defense approach to stimulate collaboration between your peer organizations via threat intelligence sharing and threat response against advanced threats. vCFCs enable you to fuel collective defense through a single integrated and modular platform-based system and assists you in making better decisions related to incident response based on its ability to connect the dots between different threat elements. Do not underestimate the power of collective defense.
Ensure Situational Awareness
You must strive to achieve 24x7 situational awareness at your organization by sharing real-time threat alerts with your security teams and employees based on their role and location. This will help them better understand the threats facing them, enhance their day-to-day security, business or operational decisions and at the same time, it will also stress the significance of cyber security to the entire organization.
Beware! Cybercriminals don’t need any license to hack. To protect your organization, you need to be a step ahead.
Not only in October but throughout the year, you must stay aware of the emerging cyber security threats and learn to defend against them. Moreover, you should help your stakeholders and peers understand how to keep abreast of the threats and adopt the best cyber security practices to protect themselves online.
Just like the CISA and NCSA slogan—Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart—you must understand your role in contributing to a cyber-safe and smart environment.