Be Safe, Not Sorry: Cyber Security Risk Mitigation

Risk mitigation strategies are powerful tools for handling the unknown risks and uncertainties in our day to day lives.

By Sarala Rajeshuni

Have you ever wondered if something unexpected or unpleasant were to happen, how you would handle the situation? Today, we are experiencing just that—the unwelcome invasion of COVID‑19 into our lives. This virus has taken the world by surprise with no obvious boundaries, with no limits to the damage it can cause our health, lives, and the safety of our loved ones. The armor we do have is the mitigation strategy of social distancing, reducing our exposure risk to this deadly virus and flattening the curve—a poignant but striking example of the importance of risk mitigation.

Cyber threats are becoming increasingly common and are possible in any sector including business, finance, medicine, government, research, and education, given the significant Personal Identity and other secure data stored in these systems. Cyber-attacks from outside nations, cyber criminals, or insiders can be devastating, often going unseen and occurring when organizations are least prepared. While many assume such attacks will not happen, the damages when they do can be irreversible. Repercussions include losses not only in business and finance but organizational reputation. And while recovering from cyber-attacks is costly, having cyber risk mitigation strategies in place helps preempt or reduce damage when attacks happens. Risk mitigation strategies not only secure organization systems, data, and networks, but enable security teams to conduct adequate investigations when cyber-attacks happen, allowing for efficient recovery.

Therefore, it is imperative organizations develop cyber security risk mitigation strategies after carefully evaluating their cyber landscape, business, financial, and legal risks. Mitigation strategies should include defining a cyber security governance framework, establishing a cyber security awareness program, implementing protective technologies, and developing an Incident Response Plan. Mitigating cyber risk can save organizations from crippling financial and reputational disasters. It is better to be safe, not sorry—protecting data, systems, and networks is something organizations cannot and should not compromise.

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Published on April 29, 2020 by

Dick Eassom, CF APMP Fellow