Your IT Department

Why is cyber security important?

In an era where technology is part of our daily lives, cyber security is more important now than ever. In this blog post, we’ll explore all things cyber security, shedding light on its importance in businesses and for personally identifiable information. From protecting sensitive data to ensuring the safety of global financial systems, cyber security measures help to keep day-to-day life running smoothly.

Whether you’re an individual looking to protect your data, a business wanting to protect its property, or a government agency defending against national security threats, cybersecurity is what you need to protect against a cyber attack.

Let’s take a look at why network security isn’t just a necessity but a responsibility we all share.

Protection Against Cyber Crime

What is Cybersecurity?

Cyber security can be defined as ‘protecting computer systems, networks, and sensitive data from digital attacks’. This can be done in several ways, through the use of advanced email protection, simulated phishing scams and network protection, to name a few.

Here at Your IT Department, we take a comprehensive approach to cyber and data security, using the human-machine hybrid as a way to effectively protect your data. As cyber security professionals, we’ve seen a thing or two and understand the importance of staying ahead of the curve regarding cyber threats. The cyber landscape is constantly evolving, with new threats emerging daily with the introduction of new technologies. Hence, SMBS need to be proactive in their approach to cybersecurity.

Here’s why the human-machine hybrid approach is one of the most effective ways to prevent data breaches:

Human Expertise

Cybersecurity professionals can bring their experience and knowledge to the table. They can analyse at-risk situations, think critically and make informed decisions when implementing a good strategy. In addition, they can also create simulated phishing attacks to help educate employees on how cybercriminals may gain access to company data. This is a great way to inform and educate your employees about the potential threats to security systems.

Automated Systems

On the other hand, automated systems and tools can quickly detect and respond to any issues. AI and computers can process large volumes of data quickly, speeding up the monitoring for cyber security threats. Not only are they quick, but they also remove the potential for human error, which ensures accuracy.

Continuous Monitoring

The human-machine hybrid approach creates an environment where a cyber security threat can be quickly identified and eliminated before it becomes a problem. The automated systems can detect anomalies and potential threats, whilst human experts analyse these findings in real time and prevent a cyber attack.

The Importance of Cybersecurity

Did you know that small businesses are the victims of most of today’s cyber attacks? That’s right, it’s often the smaller business that are most at risk, primarily due to the lack of cyber security protection and cybersecurity measures they have in place. Here are just a few of the things you can expect if cyber criminals attack your business:

Data Breaches

Data breaches are common consequences of cyber attacks and involve unauthorised access to sensitive data such as customer information, financial records, and intellectual property. This serious data theft can devastate small businesses, leading to a loss of trust in their brand or company.

Financial Loss

When cybercriminals attack, more often than not, they’re financially motivated. Financial losses due to the theft of financial information, ransom payments, or fraud are not uncommon, and small businesses may not have the financial resources to recover from these losses, which can be crippling.

Reputation Damage

Reputational damage is one of the largest long-term concerns a business may have. As their reputation has been damaged, partners may lose trust in the business’s ability to protect their data, and this can lead to loss of customers and difficulty in attracting new ones.

Operational Disruption

Cyber attacks can disrupt the normal operations of a business. For example, a ransomware attack can lock out access to important files and systems, halting business operations. Not only can this result in lost revenue but it can lead to additional costs to restore operations and sensitive information.

Legal Consequences

According to The Data Protection Act 2018, businesses are required to comply with data security procedures and protection laws. A cyber attack resulting in a data breach can lead to legal penalties, fines, and lawsuits if the business is found negligent in protecting customer data.

glowing keyboard with a 'compliance' button

Why is Cybercrime Increasing?

Let’s explore a few of the reasons why cybercrime has increased in recent years:

Increased Digital Connectivity

In today’s digital age, we’re connected to the internet now more than ever. With millions of devices out in the world, it also comes with added security risks. Now, cybercriminals have more opportunities to hack someone via their phone, tablet, or laptop! This cybersecurity risk is just one of the reasons why the cyber security industry is so vital, as without it, large volumes of sensitive customer data would be an easy win for hackers.

Technological Advancements

Whilst the advancement of technology has led to some exciting changes in our day-to-day lives, it has also led to criminals becoming more inventive with their technology. Hackers are now more sophisticated, leveraging new technologies like AI and Machine Learning to carry out complex and hard-to-detect attacks.

Increase in Remote Working

The pandemic brought about a new way of work, with 43% of British adults reporting they now work from home for at least half of the week. This shift to remote working brought about by the Covid pandemic has also made businesses more susceptible to cyber-attacks.

The work-from-home era has led to remote workers lacking certain security protocols available in office environments providing a key opportunity for bad actors to exploit these vulnerabilities in home networks or personal devices.

Growth of Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have provided cybercriminals with a new, untraceable way to receive funds. Traditional banking systems have regulations and checks to prevent or trace fraudulent transactions. However, the anonymous nature of cryptocurrencies allows hackers to demand ransom and receive payments while remaining hidden.

Group of office workers positioned around computer screen with a large floating virtual padlock.

How to Protect Your Organisation Against Cybercrime

The importance of cyber security can’t be understated, and therefore it’s essential to take the proper precautions to protect your business. Here are our top 3 tips on how you can improve your critical infrastructure security:

Educate Staff

Staff education is vital in ensuring that you’re protected against attacks. Regular training sessions, giving real-life examples and encouraging a culture of security are one of the most effective ways to help educate your staff. Cyber security specialists can run training sessions on how to protect connected devices and create simulated phishing attacks as practice.

Protect Your Sensitive Data

Sensitive data is one of the main things cyber criminals target, with identity theft and data breaches happening daily. Implementing data encryption software makes it impossible for hackers to steal your information. In addition, having access management software ensures that only authorised personnel should have access to sensitive data. This includes using two-factor or multi-factor authentication, where possible.

Implement a Third-Party Risk Management (TPRM) Solution

Many cyber threats come from third parties that aren’t properly analysed before interacting with them. For best practice, companies should conduct risk assessments that ensure compliance with relevant standards and continuous monitoring. Incident response plans should be comprehensive and include communication, technical response, and recovery actions.

Improving Cybersecurity Measures in the Cloud Environment

As more businesses move to the cloud, it’s important to understand the need for better cybersecurity. While the cloud offers benefits like scalability and cost savings, it also brings new challenges. Protecting data and ensuring its security involves preventing a single breach that could compromise sensitive information across devices and networks. Business leaders must prioritise cybersecurity in the cloud, using strong security controls and legitimate software to defend against evolving cyber threats.

One important aspect is recognising social engineering in cybersecurity breaches. Cybercriminals use tactics like phishing emails to trick people into sharing sensitive information. To combat this, organisations need to educate employees about these risks and provide training to identify and report potential threats.

Implementing a Zero-Trust Approach for Enhanced Security

A zero-trust approach is a useful strategy for improving cybersecurity in the cloud. Instead of assuming trust based on location or identity, this approach requires verifying every device, user, and application that wants access. By using strict access controls and monitoring activities, organisations can reduce the risk of unauthorised access and disruptions.

The zero-trust model also promotes microsegmentation, which divides the cloud environment into smaller sections. Each section has its own security policies, allowing better control over network traffic. This limits the damage of a breach by restricting movement within the cloud. By combining access controls, monitoring, and microsegmentation, organisations can block access to data and minimise the impact of a breach.

Enhancing Cybersecurity Measures for Business Resilience

As businesses rely on interconnected devices and the cloud, cybersecurity is crucial for protecting data and maintaining operations. To stay ahead of cyber threats, organisations should continually improve their cybersecurity measures. By using a zero-trust approach, strong security controls, and legitimate software, businesses can improve their overall cybersecurity and reduce the risk of breaches. Educating employees about cybersecurity and providing them with the necessary knowledge empowers them to help protect the organisation’s information. Investing in proactive cybersecurity measures ensures the long-term success and reputation of businesses in today’s digital world.

office worker stood facing virtual computer screen displaying security symbols

Are You Worried that Your Business is at Risk of a Data Breach?

If you’re worried that your business may be at risk of a data breach, one of the most effective solutions is to work with an MSP. Managed Service Providers (MSPs) take all the stress out of IT, fully managing your network security, cloud services, IT software and much more. Gone are the days of trying to solve IT issues in-house, struggling to understand that new software update. Instead, you can leave your IT to the experts on call on-site and remotely, five days a week.

Here at Your IT Department, we’re a cost-effective and reliable MSP, committed to protecting your business from potential threats. We understand that your business’s security is essential, so we work tirelessly to ensure that your systems are as secure as possible.

If you’re interested in learning more, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!

We hope that this blog has outlined the importance of cyber security and the role that Managed Service Providers (MSPs) like us play in safeguarding businesses. In an era where cyber threats are advancing rapidly, staying a step ahead is crucial. As your dedicated Managed Service Provider and experts in IT support Nottingham, we provide a robust, cost-effective solution for all your IT needs, freeing you to focus on your core business. We offer unmatched expertise and a proactive approach to security, thereby significantly minimising the risk of costly data breaches.

Don’t wait for a cyber-attack to disrupt your operations; partner with us today.

Related Article: What Is Cyber Security?