An overarching theme for many businesses is the protection and security of their data. If a company’s private information is lost or breached, the business may not be able to recover. This could result in lost revenue, a tarnished reputation, loss of jobs, or even the demise of the company itself. However, some businesses may not know what steps to take in order to protect their assets. Additionally, some companies may think that the Canadian government will protect them against cyber-attacks, but this is not the case.
In late October, 2012, the Auditor General released a report that highlighted the weaknesses in Canada’s defense against cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure and sensitive data. With no front-line defenses in the war against a global army of hackers, Canadians are vulnerable to assault. This includes any businesses operating within Canada, so it is important for companies to be proactive in protecting themselves from cyber-crime. The government does not currently have the ability to provide reliable internet security.
The first step in protecting your company’s data is establishing a business continuity plan. This will help shield your business from a wide range of occurrences, including cyber-attacks. A business continuity plan involves the definition of potential risks, determining how those risks will affect operations, implementing safeguards and procedures designed to mitigate those risks, testing those procedures to ensure that they work, and periodically reviewing the process to ensure that the plan is up to date.
The process of establishing a business continuity plan allows for you to discover any holes in your security that you may not have been aware of. Implementing a plan will greatly assist your company if there is a breach in security or loss of connectivity.
As part of their business continuity planning, many businesses have chosen to utilize cloud technology for data and application storage needs. Relocating information to a virtual environment will provide protection if a company’s internal network is compromised. However, some companies are concerned about the security surrounding their information once it has been migrated to the cloud. Fortunately, those that are offering cloud services have taken note of the concerns surrounding security and they are taking steps to combat them, such as enhanced monitoring tools, detailed service agreements, and additional layers of security.
It is important for a business to take matters into their own hands in order to ensure that they’re protected. By establishing a business continuity plan and migrating company data and applications to the cloud, businesses can combat the risk of cyber-crime.
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Blog posted by Vanessa Hartung.