Security as a Service
Protecting businesses from the increasing array of cyber threats is paramount.
Phishing, Ransomware, Supply Chain Attacks, Advanced Persistent Threats – whatever the name, the threats are real and they are only getting more sophisticated.
Security as a Service is now available for businesses – particularly those without internal IT resources – who are seeking to layer their defense against potential cyber-attacks, and to minimise their vulnerability.
Hood Sweeney Technology has introduced a Security as a Service offering to help small and medium-sized businesses unsure of how to mitigate the risks and their threat exposure.
The ‘Essential Eight’
The Australian Signals Directorate’s Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) has developed a number of mitigation strategies, in the form of "The Strategies to Mitigate Cyber Security Incidents". The most effective of these strategies are known as the Essential Eight.
This recognises that no single mitigation strategy is guaranteed to prevent all cyber security incidents. Rather, organisations are recommended to implement a series of mitigation strategies to make it much harder to compromise systems. Implementing the Essential Eight proactively is certainly preferable to responding to a large-scale cyber security incident.
In a world of increasing internet threats, the Essential Eight and the risk mitigation steps it outlines are the new ‘norm’ of doing business.
The Essential Eight includes implementing the following basic strategies to protect your business:
- Application whitelisting.
Why: All non-approved applications (including malicious code) are prevented from executing.
- Patch applications regularly.
Why: Security vulnerabilities in applications can be used to execute malicious code on systems.
- Restrict administrative privileges.
Why: Administrator accounts are the ‘keys to the kingdom’. Adversaries use these accounts to gain full access to information and systems.
- Patch operating systems.
Why: Security vulnerabilities in operating systems can be used to further compromise systems.
- Microsoft Office macro settings.
Why: Microsoft Office macros can be used to deliver and execute malicious code on systems.
- User application hardening
Why: Flash advertisements and Java ‘pop-ups’ are popular ways to deliver and execute malicious code on systems.
- Multi-factor authentication.
Why: Stronger user authentication makes it harder for adversaries to access sensitive information and systems.
- Daily backups.
Why: To ensure information can be accessed following a cyber security incident (eg a ransomware attack).
Beyond the Essential Eight, Hood Sweeney Technology works with partners to provide the following protective safeguards that can enhance security and allow for fast detection and remediation:
- A Unified Threat Management device (UTM), which is mandatory, to secure the network perimeter and provide advanced firewall and traffic inspection in real time.
- Threat Detection and Response (TDR) from WatchGuard - is a powerful collection of advanced malware defense tools that correlate threat indicators from UTM appliances and Host Sensors to stop known, unknown and evasive malware threats.
- Security Awareness Training from Webroot – an education process that teaches employees about cybersecurity, IT best practices, and even regulatory compliance. A comprehensive security awareness program can train employees about a variety of IT issues.
- Advanced Network Monitoring by Auvik – a cloud-based network management software alerts us about network issues before our clients so we can provide strategic guidance to ensure the network is fit for purpose and free from business risks.
Implementing the Essential Eight strategies can seem like a monumental task but Hood Sweeney IT specialists are available to define, develop and implement the Essential Eight Strategy that is right for your business.
Most organisations may have completed a number of the elements already, while other components may be in the pipeline or yet to be considered. Once businesses have implemented their desired mitigation strategies to an initial level, they should focus on increasing the maturity of implementation so they eventually maximise their defence strategy.
Hood Sweeney Technology can help your business stay one step ahead of cybersecurity threats by focusing the conversation on risk management.
We work closely with your stakeholders and service providers to bolster your defences, incident response and capability to recover from the inevitable.