Almost 90% of organizations have seen an increase in the volume of cyber attacks over the past 12 months according to a study by Mimecast.
Most security experts point to a layered approach in security procedures to help mitigate this risk.
The following list explores five elements of an effective layered defense strategy, forming a mesh of protection around an organization’s systems.
1. Patch Management: A popular technique among cyber attackers is to target software that hasn’t been updated to protect it from known vulnerabilities. This is where a regular software and operating system patch management protocol can be a quick win for IT administrators and/or their IT providers.
2. Antivirus: A regimen of regularly updated antivirus services should be a key part of any organization’s defenses. Although it is not sufficient on its own to prevent attacks, it provides a useful line of defense against malicious software that can be used by attackers to gain a foothold in corporate systems.
3. Web Protection: According to the Verizon Data Breach Incident Report, 54% of all malware infections are due to interactions with the web. Given that many malware strains are delivered via a browser, web protection is another important part of a layered defense strategy. Web protection services receive regular updates of domain names and IP addresses associated with malicious behavior and can be used to block visits from corporate networks.
4. Mail Protection: As one of the single most important tools for business, email is still a significant means of delivery for attackers. In fact, 61% of organizations surveyed by Mimecast admitted to being hit by an attack where malicious activity was spread from one infected user to other employees via email in the last year. Ensuring that a company’s email security is up to date is critical to effective protection. It may never be possible to block 100% of all malicious communications, but a good email security solution will ensure that the majority get blocked before they even arrive in your employee’s inboxes.
5. Backup: Effective backup is the final step and critical service in a layered strategy. Ensuring defense strategies are up to date will offer peace of mind from a security standpoint, but even the best protections can be compromised. The threat of attack, along with the consequences of physical data loss, makes backup a critical part of any cyber-security strategy.
Whereas, no level of protection can 100% guarantee a cyber attack will not occur, utilizing the 5 layers of security mentioned above will minimize the danger these threats pose on a real time basis.