Does Your Business Need a Network Security Assessment?
In recent years, the mission-critical technology of the average business has increased significantly. As digitization becomes an essential process for businesses in every sector, so we’ve moved beyond basic IT infrastructure, with cloud computing, communication applications, remote working applications and complex data networks becoming the new normal.
While this is an essential and practical process for businesses to remain competitive, the fact is that the more complex your technology, the easier it is for a misconfigured security solution to create crippling vulnerabilities within your organisation. This is where a network security assessment, performed by a trusted IT security partner becomes critical.
What is the Cost of Insufficient Network Security?
Many businesses are hesitant to perform a network security assessment because of the cost involved. However, failing to perform this check-up can have far more dire consequences.
According to a report from Digital Guardian, the cost of a data breach in 2019 can be anything between US$1.25 to US$8.19 million – that’s a global average, and it’s increased by 12% in the last 5 years alone. In Australia, the cost of a data breach is sitting at US$2.3 million on average.The cost of downtime, lost data and malicious actions is only one part of the cost to consider, as the damage to your organisational reputation and brand can be much higher.
IT security attacks are on the rise too, with 4.1 billion data records breached worldwide in the first half of 2019 alone, an increase of 54% from 2018. These attacks showed that no industry is safe, hitting the financial, government, entertainment, healthcare and education sectors, amongst others.
What Happens in a Network Security Assessment?
A quality network security assessment should evaluate your current setup from start to finish in order to identify vulnerabilities and potential opportunities for cyber-attacks or issues relating to data security compliance or industry regulations. This is known as a vulnerability assessment, and should include an evaluation of your web applications, communication setups, wireless networks and IT security protocols, focusing on day-to-day applications where compromises would be most costly.
Your IT security partner will work with your in-house team to identify challenges and weaknesses, determining a strategy to ensure a complete understanding of your industry and business needs as well as IT security practices and protocols that are currently in place.
The second form of assessment is a penetration test, where a cyber-attack is mimicked to test the strength of your network’s defences and measure the impact of an attack on certain assets. This dry run will show what data will be exposed, how quickly your defences can react to mitigate the attack and how many records will be compromised.
Methodology for an IT Security Risk
Network security assessments will be tailored to your business and industry, but generally follow this set process:
- Inventory – Creating a comprehensive list of your organisation’s most valuable assets to determine what needs to be secured and to develop a map of your IT networks.
- Assessment – Determining the vulnerability of different assets to different types of attack, including outside threats, bad security habits, third parties with access to your network, and more.
- Testing – Organisations can test their defences by running penetration tests to determine how easy it is to break into your network.
- Closing vulnerabilities –Once vulnerabilities and opportunities for exploitation are identified, your IT security partner can recommend and implementmeasures to shore up weak spots and mitigate risks effectively. This includes all security processes, including action policies in the event of a security breach, Bring Your Own Device policies, security log review policies and more.
- Monitoring – The world of IT security is constantly evolving in response to new threats. As these threats change, your IT security partner can monitor your system and make key recommendations to mitigate these risks.
Effective, Professional IT Security Services to Protect Your Organisation
Otto IT operates at the forefront of IT security, offering comprehensive services to protect your organisation’s data while ensuring your IT network operates at optimal efficiency.
We have the experience, expertise and solutions in place to provide clients with comprehensive security against network vulnerabilities that are targeted by malware and ransomware attacks. For more information on our IT security services, please contact us today.