5 Ways CIOs can Augment Cyber Defenses for Their Organizations

5 Ways CIOs can Augment Cyber Defenses for Their Organizations

By Gov CIO Outlook | Thursday, August 29, 2019

As businesses are only as sturdy as their weakest link, CIOs need to ensure that every worker maintains cyber hygiene.

FREMONT, CA: Cybersecurity is no more just a technology concern, but an existential enterprise threat. So, organizations are looking to CIOs to administer the primary class of business risk. Cyber defenses usually have a short life span; hence, malware directory in the cybersecurity system requires regular updating.

Additionally, passwords used by company employees may be exposed to cyber-attacks over time. So, without the frequent strengthening of digital walls and constant vigilance, security measures may not protect the systems against newer threats. Here are five tips for CIOs that can help them incorporate better defense sector and keep their organizations safe:

Uphold and Implement a Solid Security Policy

No matter what the size of the organization is, CIOs need to ensure that each new employee is aware of the defense architecture, security standards, and protocols. The officers are required to put everything in writing, and ensure that every member of staff understands the measures they need to take to protect the data. Besides, periodically refreshing protocols and performing routine checks to test the employees’ knowledge of security standards can give executives the know-how of their progression.

A central part of the security policy should be a disaster recovery plan that instructs everyone in the organization on how to react and handle a system failure or breach. Before creating a layout, CIOs can make sure to get feedback and possible scenarios from every department. The response helps businesses to be as prepared as possible both for the event itself and the necessary conduct all through the recovery period.

Supervise the Network and Systems to Identify Threats

The flow of information into, within and out of an organization should be monitored, as procedures and patterns of healthy activity form with time. CIOs can employ SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) software to recognize potential threats and create a SOC (Security Operations Centre) function. The system encompasses the systems and workforce that are in charge of identifying and neutralizing threats. Any enterprise or individual is a probable target for malicious entities and hackers, to which vigilance is the key. So, it is significant for executives to distinguish the sensitive assets and safeguard them by making sure that they are only accessible to a few notable people within the organization.

Get More People Involved

As businesses are only as sturdy as its weakest link, CIOs need to ensure that all workers maintain their cyber hygiene. Employees should check security certificates, URLs, and email addresses in any state that requires them to key in their credentials or other sensitive data. Information officers can deploy the latest solutions to keep up with good cybersecurity practices. One platform helps employees practice cybersecurity measures as they work, with the help of gamified training experience. The platform’s AI engine masquerades phishing attackers, and if any coworkers flag the impending threats correctly, they earn rewards. If employees are comfortable to know and report threats, they are more prone to do it when the real ones rear their heads.

Also, if any company employs BYOD policy, then CIOs should ensure each device has antivirus software installed on it. Additionally, it is also required by an organization to abstain its employees from connecting unknown external hardware like portable USB flash drives, to any company device.

Protect the Code

At present open-source code is a prerequisite as developers cannot build software fast enough without it. Along with the advantages, there are also a lot of concerns associated with the tool as using open source brings new compliance and security challenges. Most often, companies using the software have the human resources or tools needed to continually review open-source code for security issues, bugs, or licensing problems. If not studied, then the bugs could inadvertently make their way into the tool. To understand where the vulnerabilities in the code lie, most companies are obligated to scan their code continuously and check it against multiple data resources.

There are many security solutions available today that CIOs can incorporate to mechanize the entire procedure of open source component selection and approval. The novel software alerts developers of new data discovered by the online community and sends real-time notifications on compliance and security concerns. The notifications facilitate developers with the use of open-source code without having to worry about keeping a tab and continuously check it. Overall, the security tools for open-source codes are so that no vulnerabilities make their way into the business’s systems or software.

Keep the Organization’s Software and Hardware Up-To-Date

Hackers or cybercriminals are frequently looking for weaknesses they can exploit. Sometimes even the leading software companies release updates that enclose unnoticed bugs, regardless of their best efforts. So, the CIOs of all organizations must direct the IT department to update all the software and hardware continually, and download the latest patches. A few company executives choose to automate endpoint management by using software that regularly monitors for susceptibility and fix them. Conversely, while automated endpoint management is both cost-effective and convenient, it is also significant to stay watchful and follow the components to guarantee they are updated.

Revive Organizational Defenses

In review, there are as many ways CIOs can protect their organization. Many of the measures used to defend the system in the past year may be out-of-date in the existing years, as new threats arise. So, keeping the cyber defenses as tight as possible and ensuring that both the technological and human factors tended to are paramount to keep the operation acting smooth and minimize potential threats.

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