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There’s no doubt that any infringement on your organization’s data can heavily impact your business’s bottom line and reputation. Proactive leadership teams help combat these repercussions by developing personalized cybersecurity strategies and action plans that help them identify vulnerabilities and provide them with the framework needed to respond to risks.

The World Economic Forum Global Risks Perception Survey 2019-2020 indicated two of the top 10 risks in terms of likelihood over the next ten years were Data fraud or theft (#6) and cyberattacks (#7). Respondents to this survey also rated information infrastructure breakdown (#6) and cyberattacks (#8) as the most impactful risks for the next 10 years. Interestingly, for doing business globally, cyberattacks (#2) are the most concerning risk after fiscal crises (#1) over the next ten years.

Incident Detection and Response

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Business leaders and IT management typically don’t have the time in their schedules to focus extensively on day-to-day data security operations. However, detection and response is not something manufacturers should ignore. Without the proper tools and insight, businesses may not know that they are at risk of a data breach until it has already negatively affected your customers.

Consider the impact that a security breach can have on your business’s brand reputation, daily operations, and financial bottom line. It is imperative that you must place cybersecurity at the forefront of your priorities.

You may need to outsource your incident detection and response tools to intelligent services that assess, prevent, and handle cyber risks. Certitude Security® can help you manage resources by addressing protections to prevent, deter, and detect threats with our incident detection and response services.

Security Event vs Incident

A security event is a change in the everyday operations of a network or information technology service, indicating that a violation of security policy or a security safeguard may have failed.

A security incident is an event where an organization’s systems or data is compromised or that measures put in place to protect them failed. In IT, an event is anything that has significance for system hardware or software, and an incident is an event that disrupts normal operations.

Cyber Risk Management

The security risk management cycle is the ongoing process of finding, assessing, and responding to cyber risk. Manufacturers should develop a sound risk management policy with systematic methods to evaluate and respond to threats. More importantly, a sound cyber risk management policy should establish shared knowledge and clear communications about risks. The investments in cyber strategy, systems, and operations are designed to prevent and detect cyber threats and quickly respond to events to minimize business disruption and financial losses.

Excerpt from a 2019 Verizon report, “Manufacturing has been experiencing an increase in financially motivated breaches in the past couple of years, but espionage is still a strong motivator. Most breaches involve phishing and the use of stolen credentials.”

They go on to disclose, “For the second year in a row, financially motivated attacks outnumber cyber-espionage as the main reason for breaches in Manufacturing, and this year by a more significant percentage (40% difference). If this were in most any other vertical, it would not be worth mentioning as money is the reason for the vast majority of attacks. However, Manufacturing has experienced a higher level of espionage-related breaches than other verticals in the past few years.”

Handling Cybersecurity Risk

In order to combat present and future cyber security issues, your business should develop a comprehensive risk management process that makes the most of the scope of your resources. Common methods for handling cybersecurity risk include avoid, transfer, accept, or mitigate. The most proactive way to handle cybersecurity risks is to assess the probability and potential impact of an event, then determine the best approach to deal with the risks. An insightful risk management decision might not be able to eliminate a threat altogether, but it may have the capacity to prevent future attacks from occurring. An effective system should incorporate situational awareness in order to encourage well-informed decisions on how to handle these risks. In addition, the management process of cyber risks takes on resource governance and allocation, as well as a holistic approach that combats data breaches across the whole organization. This allows risk decisions to be informed, considered, and evaluated in the context of business objectives.

One of the most impactful features of a risk management program is its capacity for incident detection and response. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) noted the need for these functions as a means to “minimize loss or theft of information and disruption of services caused by incidents.” In addition, this stage of the risk management process involves undergoing assessments that allow businesses to locate exactly what elements need to be strengthened.

Measuring the Effectiveness of Incident Response

Cyber criminals use ransomware and destructive malware, insider threats, and honest user mistakes present ongoing threats to manufacturers. Manufacturing data, such as database records, system files, configurations, user files, applications, and customer data, are all potential targets of data corruption, modification, and destruction.

Developing a strategy and action plan to defend against these threats requires two things:

  • thorough knowledge of the assets within your facilities
  • the protection of these assets against the threat of data corruption and destruction.

Businesses may want to evaluate their cybersecurity services, the progression of strategy, and the capabilities of their incident response plans. Managed detection and response ensures you have the right people, technology, and tactics in place to stay ahead of cyber attackers. The most effective way to measure the productivity of your action plan is to undergo scenario-based testing. This discipline takes a critical look at your present cybersecurity policy and locates any weaknesses that are not apparent on the surface.

People and multiple systems need to work together to identify and protect an organization’s assets against the threat of corruption, modification, and destruction. We help you explore methods of effectively identifying your business assets, such as your devices, data, and applications that are probable targets of data integrity attacks. We can also help you identify the vulnerabilities in the organization’s system that facilitate these attacks.

Security Capabilities

One method that business owners can take to improve their security capabilities is to utilize red and blue team exercises periodically. Red team members will begin the assessment by identifying security flaws that can affect the security of your devices and applications, just like a hacker would in a real-life situation. As the Red team begins launching their attacks, evaluate your blue team on how or if they can block the attack, and what actions your blue team has taken to mitigate any breaches that occurred during the “attack”.

After the scenario, have both the red and blue teams communicate about the attacks used, how the attacks were detected, and what methods the blue team used to block and stop the attacks. The debrief process allows the blue team to learn more about those attacks that were missed and better understand how to prevent those attacks in the future.

Another approach that business owners can take is to assess your business’s capabilities for locating potential risks that could affect your organization. This method can include conducting vulnerability assessments to determine the potential risk of vulnerable machines on your network.

Conducting third party assessments will determine if your data is at risk due to a third-party member of your supply chain being hacked. Threat intelligence will be part of your information security planning to protect company data. Having the ability to identify a security threat is just as important as being able to prevent and mitigate attacks. Just as it is vital to know how to handle an attack, it is also only as necessary to identify and mitigate the security threat before disaster strikes.

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Zero Trust Controls

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Readiness should not be limited to the response after an attack. Right now, malware is likely sitting undetected on systems within your network. We know from experience that exploits to published vulnerabilities exist within your networks, control devices, and other digital assets. It is also far less likely, but there may be an ill-intended user within the walls of your business who could use authorized access to inflict damage.

In some areas, tighter security practices and least privilege is warranted. Other business areas may be technically or feasibly impractical to secure further but merit more robust capabilities to detect and respond to potentially malicious activity.

Controlling what the software can run and what resources the software can access is a more effective policy. First, by defining how applications can interact with each other, and then controlling what resources applications can access, such as network, files, and registry. These restrictions can minimize exposure from legacy applications that are known to have exploited.

Every manufacturer should institute some variation of a secure and intentional approach aligned to its cyber risk tolerance.

Providing you with the evaluation tools your business needs to assess its abilities to locate cyber attacks and mitigate the damage they can inflict upon the organization. We boil it down to the metrics that matter in reducing the impact of a cyber breach.

Developing a strategy and action plan to defend against ransomware and destructive malware, insider threats, and honest user mistakes takes time. Failing to plan, is planning to fail. Contact us today.

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