Juvare Blog

What Should You Be Doing to Prepare For and Respond to a Cyberattack?

May 9, 2019 1:24:45 PM / by David Layman

Don’t Sleep Through Your Organization’s Cybersecurity Planning

 

Does the possibility of a cyberattack on your company or organization keep you up at night?

It doesn’t have to if you’re confident that you have prepared properly and have a plan for a rapid and decisive response to a data breach.

Unfortunately, many people sleep through their incident preparation and response planning, in blissful ignorance or even denial that their organization could fall victim to a cyberattack.

 

A clear-eyed assessment about the likelihood of a cyberattack and the extent of the damage it could cause is the source of considerable anxiety, even for those accustomed to pressure. Not the least of these worriers is former NATO commander Admiral James Stavridis, who certainly could draw from a long list of items to worry about.

In a 2017 Gartner ThinkCast interview, Stavridis said, “The thing that kept me awake at night was cybersecurity. Cybersecurity proceeds from the highest levels of our national interest – our infrastructure, our transportation grids, our water management systems — through our medical, our educational, to our personal finance.” (Gartner Thinkcast interview - -- Sept. 12, 2017).

Corporate leaders, therefore, are justified in losing sleep because of cybersecurity concerns, especially considering some of the most infamous cybersecurity breaches at some of the world’s largest, and presumably most technologically savvy corporations like FedEx, Maersk, Merck Pharmaceuticals, Equifax, Marriott and Target, just to name a few – which cost hundreds of millions and tarnished their brands.

 

Many companies have been able to mitigate the damage of cyberattacks by having a plan in place and taking swift, decisive action. If you’re not sure how to enact a plan, you can download Juvare’s Quick Guide to cyberattacks, and learn 5 things you should be doing now to ensure an effective response.

 

Cyberattacks Cost Corporations Millions

Business downtime from catastrophic events like cyberattacks, natural disasters, or workplace violence can cost as much as $336,000 per hour, according to a recent Gartner study.

It’s no coincidence that cyberattacks are often grouped together with critical incidents like natural disasters and terrorist attacks, as the result can be just as disastrous; in fact:

  • Cybercrime is a $1.5 trillion a year business – that’s about 5 times the cost of natural disasters in 2017, according to Dr. Michael McGuire, a senior criminology lecturer at the University of Surrey in the UK.

 

The scary thing is being hit by a cyberattack is more likely than being impacted by a natural disaster, and the threat is not going away:

  • In 2018, there was a 350% increase in ransomware attacks, a 250% increase in spoofing or business email compromise attacks and a 70% increase in spear-phishing attacks, according to Industry Week.

 

And the costs continue to rise:

  • The average cost of data breaches rose from $4.9 million in 2017 to over $7.5 million in 2018, according to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

You can see why the threat of a cyberattack might cause sleepless nights.

 

Despite this, organizations still don’t allocate nearly the amount of resources toward preparing for a cyberattack as they should, especially considering the potential impact it could have on the organization, its customers and brand reputation.

What would a cyberattack cost your business? Are you prepared? Many organizations we talk to admit that their current systems are inadequate to deal with such an event.

 

How Can You Be Prepared for a Cyberattack?

As with all critical incidents, the key to mitigating damage is to be well prepared. Studies have shown that the faster you can identify, respond and contain a cyberattack, the less costly it will be to your organization.

Our Quick Guide, you’ll find 5 helpful steps on how to:

  • enhance and maintain your organization’s situational awareness
  • support fast and efficient communications and connectedness
  • respond quickly and decisively to a cyber-related crisis, specifically; or to any other type of critical incident

To learn more about how cyberattacks can affect corporations, healthcare companies, and higher education institutions – and 5 things you should be doing to be prepared for a cyberattack, download our Quick Guide: What is Your Plan? The Enormous Cost of Cyberattacks.

 

You might just sleep better.

 

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Topics: resilience, Preparedness, Incident management, data security, Crisis Communication, Incident Management Software, Business Disruption, Business Continuity Management Software, Cybersecurity, Cyberattack

David Layman

Written by David Layman