Businesses of all sizes face the risk of cybercrime, which is why it is increasingly important for companies to take the steps necessary to boost their cyber security. It is commonly assumed that only larger organizations are at risk of cyber threats, but attacks are targeting less secure businesses more and more as it becomes clear where priorities lie. This cyber liability toolkit guide is designed to help you and your organization ramp up your cyber security practices and protect your sensitive data, your client’s private information, and your overall businesses from the threats you may face virtually.
This is only a basic guide. It is advised that you consult with a legal expert for further advice or advice relevant to your business’ needs and how it uses data. Read on to understand the risks of cyber breaches, how to identify exposures, and how to mitigate threats.
Understanding Your Cyber Liability Risks
Would you know what a data breach was if it occurred? Does your business have a plan in place if a data breach ever does occur? Is your team all on the same page with your business’s cyber security policies?
These questions are important when it comes to understanding data breaches, defining cyber attacks, and making up a plan on how to proceed following an event. If your company makes, uses, or handles any sensitive information, such as financial data, customer personal data, proprietary corporate data, or otherwise private property, you are at risk of a data breach. It doesn’t matter the size of your business.
A data breach is defined as “an event where insecure or sensitive data is hijacked by cyber criminals or unauthorized parties.” The cyber criminal could be anyone – a third party or even a dissatisfied or former employee.
How to Identify an Exposure
Just because you’re a small corner shop doesn’t mean a data breach won’t ever happen. This can result in relatively lax cyber security measures – which may very well be a recipe for disaster. Should your company suffer from a data breach, it’s important to recognize your exposure.
First of all, stay informed. You will face several threats that may change daily, so keep yourself updated on the latest cybercrime news so you may familiarize yourself with the symptoms of a breach. In order to stay ahead of your risks, it’s a good idea to know what the most common cyber-attack methods are.
There is software you can implement to easier detect data breaches. Consider purchasing a reputable data security platform to detect company data breaches.
How to Mitigate Cyber Threats
The best way to handle a cyber threat is to never have to deal with one in the first place. This comes with prevention strategies which are more than worth the effort when you think of the financial ramifications that some data breaches may bring. Consider the following risk management strategies for your business, small or large:
Create a formal risk management plan.
Failing to plan is planning to fail. Consider implementing and regularly reviewing a documented risk management plan. In this plan, address the roles everyone in your company will play, their responsibilities, methodology, and compliance criteria. You should include descriptions of every system your organization uses, based on importance, and what data is stored within them. Review this plan annually and make updates whenever your information systems change or if there is an external condition that may impact your risk factor.
Practice low-effort cyber security measures
Sufficient cyber security does not have to take up all your time, nor does it need to be expensive. Consider implementing the following measures:
- Do not allow your employees to ever give out sensitive information like payment information, social insurance numbers, etc. unless the identification of the other person has been verified and they have authorization to this information.
- Shred any sensitive data or credit reports before disposing of them.
- Inform all employees about email scams and phishing. Tell them to report any messages or emails that may seem suspicious.
- Outsource your IT if you do not have an IT department already and have them set up security measures for your business’ network.
- Monitor financial data and credit reports. If something looks awry, it might be time to do some investigation.
- Do not let employees write down passwords. Instead, invest in a password manager and ensure that passwords are varied and strong.
- Encrypt all sensitive information.
Invest in Cyber Liability Insurance
If your company does not have backup savings in the event you suffer from a data breach, insurance is critical. Cyber Liability insurance for businesses can cover any expenses that come with notifying your clientele of a data breach, replacing lost income, and doing investigations.
It is much more affordable for your company to prevent data breaches than it is to pay to recover from the aftermath of one. An insurance policy is affordable and can give you the peace of mind you need – on top of sufficient cyber security methods – in the event something ever does happen. Data breaches are costly, and they can take a long time to recover from for many businesses.
Contact Excalibur Insurance to discuss Cyber Liability Insurance in further detail.