What is Cybersecurity Posture And How Do You Improve It?

Debasish Pramanik Cloud Security Expert - CloudCodes Software
  • May 28th, 2021

By the day, there’s an increasing number of new malware, new ransomware gimmicks, hackers, and an overall threat to your cybersecurity. Even worse, the numbers aren’t just growing; the sophistication of cyber-attacks is growing. Organizations are under duress to ensure the security of data at all costs because it’s their responsibility. This explains why there’s increasing effort by enterprises to ensure the security of organizational data. Cybersecurity posture is your organization’s approach to solving cyber threats once and for all and continuously in the face of new future odds and threats. In this resource, we would detail all you need to know about cybersecurity posture. 

What is Cybersecurity Posture?

Cybersecurity posture details your overall “arsenals” against cyber-attacks. They are proactive practices, measures, and solutions you put in place to ensure you get sufficient protection against cyber attacks and threats.  It ranges from cybersecurity policies, malware protection, anti-virus solutions, staff/employee training, and other proactive practices that keep your security intact.  

For you to make sense of cybersecurity posture, you must understand your cybersecurity risk. Cybersecurity risk is some assessment that exposes the loopholes in an organization’s overall cybersecurity systems. Through cybersecurity risk, your IT team can set up a challenging cybersecurity posture that guarantees maximum protection.  

Assessing Your Cyber Security Risk 

The end of your cybersecurity risk assessment should objectively measure how secure your organization is against cybersecurity threats. Your IT team should measure your vulnerability and evaluate if you have reasonable solutions for your vulnerability.  More importantly, organizations must determine if they are using the right cybersecurity strategy after a cybersecurity risk assessment. 

Three things your cybersecurity risk assessment must include are: 

1. Inventory of IT Assets 

Start your risk assessment by getting an audit and inventory of all IT assets. IT assets refer to all and any device, services, applications, and cloud with access to your enterprise network or data. Beyond getting a list of all IT assets is a weightier task.  

Your IT team must have sufficient knowledge of every IT asset to optimize protection for each IT asset. Information such as services linked to the asset, type of asset, ports, user accounts, and business criticality of each asset would be helpful. Noting outdated assets that no longer receive updates from the manufacturer is pertinent to maintaining the integrity of your cybersecurity. 

2. Identify Attack Surface 

The attack surface is the entry points from your assessment that are the potential entry of cyberattacks. This entry may not be direct; it can also be indirect (running through several data to their target data). Your cybersecurity assessment must note direct and indirect entry points through which attacks can be launched. Solutions must be integrated to defend these attack points and set up strict surveillance over them. 

3. Put The Pieces Together 

You’d discover lots of information from your cybersecurity risk assessment. It’s time to put the pieces together and build a formidable cybersecurity posture. Cybersecurity posture shares an inverse relationship with cybersecurity risk. This means when one is strong, the other is weak, and when one is weak, the other is stronger. For the safety of your organizational data, your cybersecurity posture better is the strong side. 

Putting the pieces together entails evaluating all attack surfaces based on several metrics. These metrics are;  

  • The severity of a vulnerability relevant to the asset 
  • The threat level of a probable attack. How likely is an attack going to be launched through this attack surface? 
  • How exposed is the vulnerability, and how frequently used is the asset? 
  • Business criticality of the assets. 
  •  The effects of not putting and putting appropriate security measures in place. 

How Do You Improve Cybersecurity Posture? 

It’s indispensable to any organization that its cybersecurity posture is formidable. The generic way of sustaining a challenging cybersecurity posture is to create a system that periodically evaluates, regulates, and monitors your cybersecurity.  

Other practices like formulation and implementation of relevant policies, work cultures that support cybersecurity, training programs for staff, and risk analysis programs can sustain the integrity of your cybersecurity posture. 

Apart from ensuring your organization has a formidable IT team. Your organization’s IT team would function better if they can automate the inventory of all your enterprise assets. This way, they get to have a surveillance system and security coverage for every asset in your organizational cyberspace. 

Your IT team should keep tabs on risk ownership in the cybersecurity of your organization. Remember that there’s a part everyone plays in the security of organizational data and the cloud. People who have access to sensitive information must be well educated about risks and monitored. Your IT team must be able to receive reports of their actions and set up timely communication of the risk associated with any action they approve. Risk mitigation actions must also be included in the sequence. 

A risk ownership hierarchy would help you keep tabs on essential access points in your network security and cloud security. Owing to the education and monitoring of their actions, they would tilt towards more responsible and security-conscious actions while performing operations within an enterprise security system. 

Conclusion 

Never forget that your cybersecurity risk shares an inverse relationship with your cybersecurity posture. The stronger your cybersecurity posture, the weaker the risks, which are access points for a successful cyber attack. Asides from a formidable team, you must be able to automate systems, set structures, set policies, and continually review your attack surfaces and overall cybersecurity posture to sustain the integrity of your cybersecurity. 

It’s indispensable to educate staff and risk owners as they are the cheapest access point for cyber attacks. If they can’t attack from outside, they can attack oblivious to staff because of their carelessness. You must constantly update your knowledge and resources as hackers find better ways to breach/compromise your cloud and your organization’s cybersecurity. 

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