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Who is responsible for the protection of information security?

Cyber-attacks have become more sophisticated and deadly than ever, from phishing scams to website spoofing, IoT hacking, identity fraud and the use of ransomware. As a result, the demand for enhanced cybersecurity in the UK is at an all-time high.

The primary effect of cybercrime is financial, however, the violation of individuals' privacy and the security of their data can also have devastating consequences. For all these reasons, instigating a robust and intuitive security system is more important than ever. It's no longer sufficient to expect your IT department to have sole responsibility for policing your security. Cyber threats come from so many angles that each individual in every part of your business should be clued up on what to be aware of when operating online. To anticipate attacks, arrange scheduled meetings between staff, cascading red flags and systems for reporting suspicious activity. Encourage your employees to use their initiative to help recognise anything they encounter online that just doesn't feel right. 

What risks and cyberthreats are businesses facing today?

With the business world functioning more than ever online and growing in its dependency on digital coverage, cybersecurity has never been more critical. Even if your business isn't selling online or offering downloadable products, your company will still have an online presence, potentially exposing it to external risks. Day to day tasks such as online banking, video meetings, social media updates, website management, or simply backing up data on cloud servers could pose a danger to your company. These everyday actions highlight how vital cybersecurity is. It only takes one security breach for you to incur hefty fines for your lack of compliance and sometimes irreversible damage to your business's reputation and credibility.

Cybercrime has evolved into a global issue that has seen Ukraine's power grid, as well as IT systems at Uber, British Airways, Yahoo, Adobe, and Sony significantly compromised and damaged. The intelligence behind such aggressive and complex attacks is so sophisticated it has had an enormous impact on some companies' share prices as well as weakened trust between a brand and its customers thereby damaging the popularity and reputation of a product or service. 

How do I protect my business from cybercrime?

Cybercrime is an intimidating subject. Creating fear in the hearts of your staff in your efforts to counter cyberattacks can be counterproductive and unhelpful, leading to increased stress at work and impacting the quality of working life. Educating your staff, helping them to understand the warning signs and to be vigilant, unpacking the why's, wherefores and hows of cyberattacks and cybersecurity is likely to be far more effective. Cyber attacks can be successful if poor cyber hygiene, weak passwords, and unpatched systems are an issue. Investing in reputable and strong cyber security software is the number one strategy for self-preservation when it comes to protecting business and personal data. 

Effective cybersecurity is aligned in the comprehensive information security forum document ‘The Standard of Good Practice’ for information security. Key features of good security policies should include software covering security from end to end across your organisation. It should be enforceable and practical, have space for revisions and updates and be focused on your organisation's business goals. Customers are increasingly concerned that comprehensive cyber security measures are an integral feature of the brands they choose to invest in. However, sound cybersecurity can appear initially appear expensive. It is, however, important to realise that along with the enhanced appeal of your brand to potential new leads and investors, your investment in sound cybersecurity will be paid back immeasurably. 

How can a Management System like ISO 27001 help to manage cyber threats?

Teamwork is critical to the achievement of efficient and effective cyber security. Rather than dictate and micromanage how your employees interact with their online environment, offer the space to discuss ideas, concerns and comments on how everyone can contribute to protecting the brand. Explain how embracing and implementing ISO 27001 Information Security Management System (ISMS) into your business can actively ensure your data and information is protected, flagging data threats as they develop. 

ISO 27001 is internationally recognised as the information security industry standard to be achieved for products and services in order for an organisation to establish, implement, operate, monitor, review, maintain and continually improve its information security management systems. ISO 27001 is based on a top-down technology-neutral, risk-based approach to conducting internal audits, undertaking corrective and preventative actions. As a result, not only will ISO 27001 protect your brand's reputation, improving global structure and focus, but the system will also enable your business to comply with legal, contractual and regulatory requirements, ensuring compliance when audits are conducted.

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