In today’s digital world, all kinds of personal data exists in company databases like bank information, credit card numbers, location, search histories, buying patterns, and myriad of others. With this interconnectivity comes a criminal element, and all companies are at risk. This is especially true for manufacturing entities. According to studies done by Golden Technology Services, the manufacturing industry is the most targeted sector for not only money, but also intellectual property. In order to protect your company and customers from attack, here are some steps to take towards better security.
- Micro Segmentation
Security breaches in corporate data systems are becoming more inevitable every day. Firewall technology is important for initial protection, but it isn’t dependable in keeping all intrusions out of critical data and yet 87% of security budgets are allocated towards these firewalls according to Hewlett-Packard. This is why micro segmentation can be a great way to protect the sensitive data inside your systems.
Think of your database like a protected fort. The firewall is the guarded perimeter to keep most unwanted traffic out, but there are still multiple ways of bypassing this block. The connection businesses have online with their customers, suppliers, and employees are the metaphorical vents, underground water drains, and secret passageways criminals can use to get inside your fort. The idea behind micro segmentation is to create many smaller walls inside, around clusters of information companies don’t want to lose. This way if intruders find their way in, most doors will still be locked to them and any breach that does happen will be on a much smaller, more manageable scale.
- Know What’s Inside Your Database
In order to protect the data you have, it’s important to know what’s at stake. Many companies have more data on customers than they know what to do with and often have unclassified information lying inside their systems going unused, otherwise known as dark data. Classifying and organizing this data will help gain an understanding of what information is at risk, and can help businesses identify the most effective ways to protect it.
- Protect All Public Facing Pages
A mistake business often make is only protecting their customer check out or sign up pages. Company websites should protect every page they have in order to have the most airtight security possible. While a potential victim’s financial information may be protected, criminals can still view shopping history, views, bids, or other data which provides all the weapons necessary to create an accurate customer profile and lure victims into downloading viruses.
- Keep Anti-Virus Programs Up to Date
As an easy step to better security measures, keeping anti-virus and anti-spyware programs up to their most current versions is essential in staying ahead of the malware curve. Automating updates and patches so you don’t have to manually search for one every few weeks makes the process that much easier.
- Employee Training
Focusing on outside attacks makes it easy to overlook threats from within the organization itself. One of the ways cyber criminals can cripple systems is finding their way in through employee emails. Simply clicking harmful links or attachments allows the virus to enter the system. These emails often look like they come from trusted sources, but a second closer look will usually reveal something out of place.
It seems like an obvious step, but many corporations don’t adequately train employees to avoid emails like these. In a study done by Verizon, 150,000 test emails formatted to represent viruses were sent to its partners, and 23% of recipients opened it with 11% even opening the attachment. All it takes is one click for a system to be compromised. Training employees and using better email filters can help diminish the threat of intrusion.
To learn more about steps you can take to protect yourself, attend the Cybersecurity Breakout Session led by Carl Hill (President/CEO of Golden Technology Services) at the National MBE Manufacturers Summit 2016