In recent years, cybersecurity incidents have been dominating the headlines. Just when the organization believes that they have every measure implemented to safeguard data, systems, and networks, they get targeted by a sophisticated cyberattack. Moreover, the recent trend of having a distributed workforce has aggravated this situation to a greater extent, leaving organizations vulnerable to cyberattacks more than ever before.
Given the far-reaching consequences of a security incident, now is the time for your organization to review its cybersecurity incident response plan and update it to avoid incident security from hampering its growth. In this article, we will discuss why every organization needs a cybersecurity incident response plan as well as tips for establishing a robust cybersecurity incident response plan.
Why Every Organization Needs a Cybersecurity Incident Response Plan
For any organization, it is not a question of if, but when you will experience a cybersecurity incident. No organization processing or storing confidential data is too small or too secure to be hit by a sophisticated cyberattack.
Therefore, not having a detailed incident response plan will hurt your organization in different ways if it gets hit by a data breach. Firstly, your incident management team will keep scrambling to understand and respond to the data breach. Without having a plan in place, they will be more likely to make expensive mistakes.
Moreover, based on the type of information exposed and the extent of a data breach, the incident management team will also have to take certain legal actions. This involves notifying other governmental agencies and organizations. If your company does not have an incident response plan in place, there are several opportunities to miss crucial steps and get exposed to additional legal actions and fines.
Secondly, in case your organization experiences a significant data breach, then it will have to undergo an external investigation and audit. Therefore, regardless of the size of your business and the industry it operates in, your organization needs to have a cybersecurity incident response plan in place.
Tips to Establish a Robust Cybersecurity Incident Response Plan
The following are some of the most crucial tips to remember while developing a cybersecurity incident response plan for your organization.
- Have a strong internal team
One of the most crucial steps in developing a cybersecurity incident response plan is to assemble a robust internal team. Rather than relying on the CISO entirely, have a dedicated incident management team that can contribute to devising a successful incident response plan. This team can comprise of senior security managers and analysts, who can also communicate with employees about the data breach and advise them to take corrective actions.
- Document a list of potential breaches
As a part of your cybersecurity incident response plan, try and determine the criteria which defines a particular incident as a data breach. Once you determine the criteria, document the list of potential breaches and then keep updating it regularly so that your organization is aware of incidents that can occur. Besides that, outline quick response guidelines that can help the company take corrective actions immediately.
- Prepare an incident response checklist
The cybersecurity incident response plan of your organization must also include a succinct checklist of prioritized action items which need to be completed as soon as the management team becomes aware of the data breach. The following are some of the points to be included.
- Recording the date and time of the breach
- Identifying key legal obligations
- Activating immediate response measures
- Communicating with stakeholders
- Constantly Analyze Threats
Another important thing to consider in your incident response plan is to carry out threat analysis constantly. This will allow the organization to identify incidents and respond to them efficiently. Conducting such an analysis helps in identifying the vulnerabilities and taking corrective actions to reduce the impact of the threat.
Become an Incident Response Expert with ECIH Certification
Making an incident response plan is just one piece of the intricate puzzle that is incident response. To discover the rest, opt for a certification course for you or your employees that covers the various aspects of handling incidents in detail. One of the best certificates out there is EC-Council’s Certified Incident Handler (ECIH), which is a comprehensive, specialist-level program that imparts the knowledge and skills you need to effectively handle post-breach consequences by reducing the impact of the incident, from both a financial and a reputational perspective.