7 Steps to Accelerate Your Cyber Risk Remediation Initiative

The digitization of the modern workplace has emphasized the importance of cybersecurity for businesses everywhere. Cyber threats expose companies’ sensitive data and services and adversely impact their employees, customers, partners, and operations through data breaches, malware attacks, and other incidents.

Management teams need to add cyber security remediation to their priorities because it’s critical to infrastructure integrity and business reputation. Every industry is susceptible, but cybercriminals primarily target those in healthcare, finance, pharmaceuticals, and technology for the high monetary value of their digital assets. Even governments need to protect national and economic security through cyber risk remediation.

Cybercrime reached an all-time high in 2021, with businesses suffering 50% more attacks per week compared to last year. It’s clear that many companies fail to address cyber risks before it’s too late. But there’s thankfully a lot you can do to clamp down on cybersecurity and protect your business. It all starts with speeding up your security remediation plans.

Steps to Accelerate Your Cyber Risk Remediation Initiative

What Does Remediation in Cyber Security Cover?

Businesses need more than just a passive understanding of cybercrime; they need to proactively identify, address, and minimize cyber threats’ impact. Doing so relies on obtaining visibility into both internal and external vulnerabilities throughout the company:

  • Leaked credentials and compromised accounts
  • Misconfigured servers and networks
  • Targeted threats like phishing
  • Malware, ransomware, and other software threats

All these parts make up an organization’s general “attack surface”. Risk remediation plans must accurately identify this surface and aim to address its vulnerabilities.

Why Should Businesses Implement Cyber Threat Remediation Plans?

Cyber risk remediation is a crucial step and one of the ultimate goals of an overall risk management process. Acting quickly matters more than ever for several reasons:

  • The attack surface has increased with the adoption of digital and cloud technologies accelerated by recent remote work trends.
  • Navigating the cyber risk landscape is becoming more costly and complicated, and security teams need a holistic look at their entire attack surface before proactively addressing risks.
  • The global cost of cybercrime will quickly reach $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, not to mention the reputational and legal ramifications.

When done right, a cyber risk remediation plan reduces overall risk, improves security posture, and protects company time and resources.

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See for yourself how the Centraleyes platform exceeds anything an old GRC
system does and eliminates the need for manual processes and spreadsheets
to give you immediate value and run a full risk assessment in less than 30 days

Learn more about Centraleyes’s Automated Risk Remediation

Taking Steps Towards Accelerating Cyber Risk Remediation

If you’re implementing a cyber remediation plan, time will definitely be a factor. Speeding up your efforts will minimize the amount of exposure your business faces. The following steps will help you accelerate your data breach remediation program.

  1. Fill in Holes, Maximize Your Visibility

The first step of cybersecurity risk management is cyber risk mapping, identifying all your business’s vulnerable data and assets. From there, you can create risk profiles for each and look at what controls you have in place for them. What results is essentially an attack surface that covers:

  • All potential weak points that cybercriminals might take advantage of.
  • All external attack vectors, including leaked employee credentials, compromised source codes, stolen IT information, lost third-party vendor data, and misconfigured cloud servers.
  • All internal threats like compromised workstations, mobile devices, digital SSL certificates, IP addresses, poorly maintained operating systems and software, and weak passwords.

A risk map provides a holistic view of your general security landscape. It helps you better understand your attack surface, which is invaluable for implementing a proactive approach to cyber risk remediation.

  1. Prioritize Risks

It’s vital not only to know your cyber risks but also to analyze, contextualize, and prioritize them. Once you’ve identified a detailed attack surface with a comprehensive list of your vulnerabilities, you can identify the location and sensitivity of exposed data and systems.

It’s unrealistic to assume your security and IT teams can cover everything, so set risk thresholds depending on how pressing each vulnerability is and the total potential damage a cybercriminal can do with one of them. From there, set up alerts and notifications whenever risk rises to unacceptable levels.

  1. Fix Tool Sprawl

Turning to cyber risk remediation software is always a good idea, but some companies have too many and struggle with tool sprawl. Having so many separate tools all cover related problems results in an unfocused and fragmented solution, causing inefficiencies at every level.

The solution is to look for centralized cyber risk scanning platforms. Siloed tools are more expensive to maintain and actually result in more exposure to threats as your teams struggle to work with everything they have. Having it all in one platform eliminates this issue.

For example, instead of juggling over 20 monitoring tools as most security teams have, you can get a complete view of your real-time attack surface through a single dashboard.

  1. Align Vulnerability and Patch Processes

Many businesses working on vulnerability remediation still rely on manual patching processes, which are a leading cause of delayed efforts and, ultimately, a higher risk of data breaches.

Look for a cybersecurity management platform that enables your teams to collaborate on risk remediation. That is, make sure they have the tools to assign tasks, monitor progress, and execute patches efficiently. Keeping everyone in synchronization this way cuts down on lead time.

Software also helps with communicating clear instructions and risk profiles to security teams, which can lead to better accountability across the business.

  1. Convince Upper Management To Get On Board

Cybersecurity impacts everyone, so business administration must get on board with risk remediation efforts. But how can you convince upper management of the importance of cyber risk reduction?

Make it clear to management and other internal stakeholders that your efforts are worth the investment. Focus on a financial interpretation of risk by showing exactly how much there is to lose if you don’t start investing in cybersecurity today.

This approach of putting a potential cost on cyber threats is not only meaningful for cyber security teams but also useful for convincing executives and other non-technical audiences.

  1. Take Control of 3rd Party Partnerships

Cyber risks go beyond the walls of the business. They extend into the third-party contractors, vendors, and partners you work with as well.

For instance, the suppliers you work with store a copy of your sensitive information locally. Any data breach that impacts them will affect you too. And in a market where most companies have more than 1,000 third-party partnerships, you will need a scalable way to cover all those cyber risks. Any cyber risk remediation platform you use must offer vendor risk management as a key feature.

  1. Adhere to Data Security Regulations and Standards

Risk remediation is more than just an obligation. It’s an industry standard and often a regulatory requirement. Various data security frameworks to follow include the following.

  • The NIST Cybersecurity Framework from the US National Institute of Standards and Technology promotes cybersecurity best practices in businesses that operate critical infrastructure.
  • The US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is responsible for both the Ransomware Readiness Assessment (RRA) and the Insider Risk Mitigation Self-Assessment Tool (IRMPE) for addressing ransomware concerns and mitigating insider threats, respectively.
  • ISO Standards cover all requirements of the international Information Security Management System, which is the largest of its kind in the world.
  • Privacy regulations come from all around the world. Two of the most famous ones are the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for consumer data and privacy rights and the analogous California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).
  • Industry-specific laws also exist for certain businesses. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, for instance, covers the financial market. As its name suggests, the Higher Education Community Vendor Assessment Toolkit (HECVAT) covers vendor risk in the education sector.

If you’re looking to accelerate cyber risk remediation with a software platform, double check that the service you use pays attention to all of these laws and frameworks.

Patch Up Holes in Your Cybersecurity Posture Before They Leak

All companies face cybersecurity risks. It’s how you approach and address those risks that determines whether your business thrives despite the changing threat landscape.

Cyber risk remediation protects your business from data breaches, leaked credentials, and targeted ransomware and phishing attacks. Achieving it is possible with proper threat visibility, risk prioritization, efficient workflows for patching vulnerabilities, third-party risk management practices, and attention to data security regulations.

Are you looking for a better way to manage cyber risk remediation? Discover how Centraleyes can transform the way you manage cyber risk with our fully automated single-pane of glass solution.

Start Getting Value With
Centraleyes for Free

See for yourself how the Centraleyes platform exceeds anything an old GRC
system does and eliminates the need for manual processes and spreadsheets
to give you immediate value and run a full risk assessment in less than 30 days

See Centraleyes’s Automated Risk Remediation in action
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