Mind the Gap: The Practices that Are the Difference Between Security and Breach

Mind the Gap: The Practices that Are the Difference Between Security and Breach

There’s a major difference between the top and bottom ranked companies where security is concerned. Those in the top percentile understand what it means to have a solid game plan and adequate defenses surrounding their systems, and are able to competently and consistently execute their enterprise protection strategies. Those on the bottom tier, on the other hand, have a vague theory of how such a program “should work” but lack any measure of performance or structured plan. Sadly, those who are ill prepared are often the names the media mentions in association with a breach.


Privileged Access Implementations

One of the easiest ways to prevent trouble is through an effective privileged access program for production services. Having a formalized policy for how accounts are created, given permissions, and reviewed for appropriate access will ensure that malicious parties cannot get to valuable data. Simply performing the task of deleting users as they leave the company or department diminishes risk exposure significantly.


It’s equally important to create and enforce complex password rules. Easy-to-guess passwords nearly guarantee system invasion. By requiring specific criteria for passwords and forcing them to expire regularly, that door closes to hackers.


Finally, accounts should be created with the appropriate privileges or permissions in order for an individual to do their job. Not only does this reduce the risk of data loss and human error, but misadventure is also less likely since free range access is not permitted. Companies who manage access correctly have a much better chance of avoiding a breach than their less stringent counterparts.


Vulnerability Assessments

Top security-minded companies conduct vulnerability assessments. At the very least, a company should perform internal assessment of their applications and systems on a regular basis. An added measure is to use an outside firm that specializes in independent penetration testing or industry certification of the company’s systems. This approach helps identify potential holes and close them before hackers are able to do the same. In many industries, this independent audit may be a compliance requirement or a mandatory task before a contract can be awarded. In any case, the cost of conducting these assessments is far less than the cost of recovering from a compromise.


Monitoring and Reporting

Highly secure companies utilize one more practice: Real time visibility and management of systems. No matter how much defense is built around the network or applications, the possibility still exists that an intruder will find their way inside. The ability to detect and act on an illegitimate session is critical. Shutting it down while it is in progress may stop the hacker’s mission from being completed. Rather than recovering from a security incident, the team will have prevented it from occurring in the first place.


Security-minded enterprises do a few things differently, and those activities make all the difference. A protection program does not have to be complicated and overwhelming to be effective. Simple steps are often what prevents a breach or compromise. For more information on achieving security greatness, contact Coda Global today.

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