Security is not simply a firewall or set of user authentication policies that cover small parts of your organization. In fact, you should think of your cyber security posture as a complete whole that pertains to the protection status of your networks, hardware, software, information and training protocols. Defining, implementing, maintaining and assessing your cybersecurity posture is an essential component of your infrastructure that safeguards all of your systems against external and internal attack.
Cyber Security Posture Definition
Any good security posture definition consists of several parts. These include the following:
• The overall security measures and controls you have established to minimize your cybersecurity risk;
• The services and procedures you have put in place to manage your perimeter defenses;
• All strategies that you have implemented to monitor for, protect against and react effectively to a data breach when and if it occurs.
Increasing the scope and strength of your security posture is your best weapon against the hoard of hackers and other bad actors who make their livelihoods by preying on the vulnerabilities of others.
Ways to Strengthen Your Cybersecurity Posture
While no security technology is perfect, you need to do your best to set up a strong system for your company that takes into account the new hacking methods that are being developed every day. To determine what steps you should take, find tools that can help you to accomplish the following:
• Identify, measure and catalog all IT assets;
• Monitor all of these assets continuously to protect against threats such as phishing attacks, password and other authentication weaknesses, out-of-date or unpatched software, etc.
• Conduct an analysis of this information to predict areas of vulnerability and give an assessment of the likelihood of potential breach;
• Prioritize the importance and criticality of vulnerabilities and offer preventive information and solutions;
• Track improvements and continually measure defenses to improve the overall security plan and posture.
Assess Your Cyber Security Posture
Undertaking an honest assessment of your current security status can help you see strengths, pinpoint vulnerabilities and arrive at solutions to mitigate them. To gain this understanding, ask yourself the following questions:
• Does our cybersecurity strategy cover every aspect of device, computer, network and staff training protocol procedures?
• Are the controls we are using as immune as possible from outside attacks of all kinds?
• How vulnerable are our systems?
• Do we have stakeholders and tools on board that can accurately measure our risk of breach as well as how quickly and thoroughly we will recover from it should it happen?
• Do we have an effective vulnerability management program?
In the end, it is important to obtain buy-in from staff at all levels of your organization since your cybersecurity posture is ultimately everyone’s responsibility to one extent or another. That means delegated the tasks of goal and priority-setting, managing and minimizing risks, setting up governance controls and promoting a culture of ongoing security monitoring and maintenance. If you have not already done so, empower a dedicated team that any staff member can contact if concerns arise.
In tandem with analytics, the cyber security posture you develop will give you a realistic idea of your system vulnerabilities and the risks they make possible as well as how well you are doing compared with others in your industry. This includes potential chinks in your armor that third-party suppliers or partners could exploit. Once you have a reasonably accurate idea of what risks you are facing, you can decide which you are willing to live with and which require additional defensive action. Whether you are a small company or a global corporation, using this knowledge can give you power over your internal and external security environment.