Which cybersecurity solutions are best for my business?
Cybersecurity has grown extraordinarily complex since the early days when antivirus programs and firewalls were sufficient to protect a company. As our IT systems have grown more complex and diffuse over the decades, vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit have increased in a corresponding manner. Staying ahead of cybercriminals in this complex threat environment means using a collection of preventive and reactive solutions, each with its own specific focus or purpose. To help our customers identify and understand their own particular areas of vulnerability, our IT security consulting experts provide in-depth cyber security and cyber resilience assessments. Cyber security consulting assessments explain where your business’ vulnerabilities lie and what types of cyber security solutions are required to address those vulnerabilities. Our IT security consulting experts also give customers the chance to ask questions about recommended security solutions, to make sure you understand their purpose and importance in maintaining a solid cyber security posture.
Why is cyber security critical for a business?
In short, cyber security is critical for any business in today’s world because cyberattacks are now frequent occurrences that can have consequences severe enough to force a business to close entirely. To frame this in terms of statistics, it is estimated that every 11 seconds, yet another business is subject to cyberattack. In the space of a 2-year period, 68% of businesses reported being the target of a successful endpoint attack (i.e., a cyberattack that targets user devices like laptops, mobile phones, or Internet of Things – IoT – devices). Social engineering campaigns such as phishing attacks, which represent the majority of successful cyberattacks, cost the victimized business an average of $130,000. Compounding these losses are the effects of downtime; 40% of SMBs experienced 8 or more hours of downtime as the result of a successful cyberattack. As these facts illustrate, cybersecurity services and solutions are not important for protecting your business ‘IF’ hackers strike—companies need cyber security solutions to prepare for ‘WHEN’ cybe rattacks occur.
Does my small business really need a cyber security plan?
Yes, businesses of all sizes need robust cyber security defenses in place to protect against cyber threats. Although you might imagine that threat actors would only be interested in targeting large businesses with plentiful resources, the truth is that 43% of cyberattacks are specifically targeted at SMBs. Cyber criminals are aware that SMBs are more likely than large corporations to have inadequate cybersecurity solutions in place, which makes smaller businesses appealing targets. For example, 75% of SMBs cannot maintain acceptable cybersecurity due to lack of in-house IT staff. Likely related to in-house IT staffing insufficiencies, 54% of SMBs lack a cyber incident response plan, giving hackers more time to navigate through the business’ network to access sensitive employee, customer, and company data. Such lack of security preparation, combined with the already tight budgets possessed by most SMBs, leads to business failure for an alarmingly high proportion of SMBs that are hit by a successful cyberattack. Sadly, 60% of SMBs are forced to close within 6 months of a successful cyberattack, underscoring the importance of a multi-layered cybersecurity defense for businesses of all sizes.
What does ‘multi-layered’ mean with regard to cybersecurity solutions?
The notion of ‘layering in cybersecurity refers to the practice of combining different security solutions so that, together, they protect a business against threats and vulnerabilities of all types. Additionally, a multi-layered cybersecurity repertoire will limit the damage hackers can do should they succeed in gaining access to the company’s IT network. A common conception of the layered approach to cybersecurity includes 7 layers: the human layer, perimeter security, network security, endpoint protection, application security, data protection, and mission critical assets. IT security consulting experts find it useful to organize cybersecurity vulnerabilities into categories or layers because it helps to clarify where your business is protected and where security gaps lie. As hackers always try to find the weakest link in a business’ cyber defenses, identifying holes in your security and filling them swiftly is important. Furthermore, organizing cyber vulnerabilities into layers is also helpful in identifying the types of solutions your business needs to strengthen its cybersecurity posture. For example, if our cybersecurity consulting experts identified weakness at the level of the human layer, the logical solution to address that weakness would be employee cybersecurity awareness training. However, if our experts identified gaps in your security at the endpoint protection level, it would be appropriate to select solutions like SIEM or managed DNS security.
What are common cybersecurity challenges businesses face?
While a company may recognize the critical need for cybersecurity, a common challenge for business leaders and/or IT staff is knowing where to begin. Antivirus software and firewalls may be the apparent place to start, but the implementation of a mature and multi-layered plan, involving managed DNS, vulnerability scans, log monitoring, and more, may seem daunting. CITS’s cybersecurity consulting experts work with your team to discover the needs and goals of your business, resulting in a security plan optimized for your company and making your cybersecurity journey as smooth as possible.
Another key challenge that CITS’s IT security consulting experts often assist with is compliance planning. Indeed, one of the first steps to implementing the ideal cybersecurity plan is ensuring that your business addresses all the necessary requirements of state and federal compliance standards and privacy laws. Failure to meet such standards can lead to noncompliance fees at best and expensive data breaches at worst. CITS cybersecurity consultants, knowledgeable in industry standards from HIPAA for healthcare to FINRA for the finance sector, will assess your security practices against the requirements of applicable compliance standards for your business. Based on their findings, our cybersecurity consulting experts will provide recommendations for changes and/or additions to your cybersecurity practices to enhance them for compliance.
Finally, a common cybersecurity challenge may come from an external source: your customers. Security impacts not only your business but your clients as well. New customers or vendors may ask your company to answer a security questionnaire to certify that your business’ cybersecurity solutions and practices match their own security requirements. With CITS, our IT security consulting experts are available to assist your team with accurately and thoroughly answering such security questionnaires.
Why CITS for Managed Cybersecurity Services?
At CITS, we specialize in providing IT services and solutions to small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), which means that we understand SMB technology needs in a holistic sense. This in-depth understanding allows us to provide cybersecurity consulting services and solutions that are well suited to the SMB technology environment, and which can be customized to meet the requirements of companies based on their specific infrastructures as well as in-house cybersecurity capabilities. Because many SMBs have limited or even no in-house IT staff, our comprehensive cybersecurity coverage provides the robust, multi-layered protection that our customers need but struggle to accomplish using their in-house IT resources. On the other hand, mature SMBs may possess ample in-house IT resources while still needing supplemental cybersecurity solutions to fill gaps in their security profiles. Our expertise in the field allows us to calibrate our services to meet your business’ unique cybersecurity needs.