I was recently invited by a customer to attend a cybersecurity briefing at the Federal Reserve Bank where agents from the FBI and Secret Service discussed the current cybersecurity landscape. The information provided was alarming and valuable and as I reviewed my notes and prepared a summary for our customer I felt compelled to share the information with the balance of our customers and the business community at large.  However, while not a classified briefing, the FBI and Secret Service agents were very clear that they did not want the information from the briefing shared with the public at large.

Then I realized, NOTHING HAS CHANGED.  Sure, the details they discussed were new but as I considered how small businesses might use the information and what we can do to help our customers, I realized that nothing had changed.  In fact, the Cybersecurity section on the recently updated Go West IT website is a perfect blueprint for what steps businesses should take to avoid falling victim to a cybersecurity attack.

All you need to know is that that small businesses are the best targets for cyber criminals because they are an easy target, the most likely to pay a ransom, they hold a treasure of valuable data, and they are the most likely to fall victim to a social engineering attack.  Take steps now to make sure your business isn’t an easy target.

Last but not least, if your business does not have a regulatory burden to develop comprehensive policies to cover cybersecurity, disaster recovery, and business continuity, I encourage you to shore up your systems and controls before you spend a lot of money on policies.  I have seen a number of businesses that have hired cybersecurity “experts” who do little more than produce volumes of policies with which the business can’t or doesn’t comply.  Policies are great, plans are important, but only if you can live up to them.

I am re-posting the pertinent content of the Cybersecurity section of our website here.  Take this information, take action, and don’t be a victim.

Cybersecurity

Go West IT specializes in delivering cybersecurity solutions and consulting services to small and medium sized businesses.

Cybersecurity is important to every business.  Gone are the days when you can bury your head and hope that your business, your customers, your employees, your data, and your contractors will not be the target of an attack.  In fact, there is ample evidence to suggest bottom feeder cybercriminals are shifting their focus from banks, retailers, and big business to small businesses that are easy targets.

Go West can help you protect your business by leveraging our extensive experience protecting highly regulated businesses.  The first step is to make a committment to constantly improving your cypersecurity posture.  Go West will work with you to identify solutions that will deliver the best value for your business and then work with you to develop a roadmap so you know what will be the next step when you’re ready to do more.

A well configured Unified Threat Management (UTM) appliance, good antivirus, and tight access/user controls is the first step.  Next consider multifactor authentication for all critical systems, routine vulnerability scanning and vulnerability remediation, IDS/IPS systems, and always have rock solid backup solutions to mitigate the risk of ransomware attacks.

Businesses should not overlook the tremendous value of low cost user awareness training.  Up to 90% of successful cyberattacks used social engineering (people) as a vector for an attack.  Go West will be happy to conduct a training meeting at your office to help your employees understand their role in cybersecurity.

You can always do more.  You better do something.  Start today by calling Go West.  We will be happy to visit with you about your current posture and how you can improve.