8 data breach management tips every business should know

With 2022’s third quarter seeing a 70% rise in data breaches, it is clear that, as a business owner, protecting your organization’s sensitive information is essential. A data breach can negatively impact your business’s information technology (IT) solutions, data privacy and security standards, and reputation. 

But thankfully, there are various practices you can perform to make data breach management easier for you. This article will provide you with 8 tips to help ensure your data is safe from cybersecurity risks like data breaches.

1. Have an incident response plan on hand

An incident response plan (IRP) is a documented strategy that outlines a business’s formal steps when responding to cybersecurity risks. A response plan helps you minimize any damages caused by cyber threats so you can return to business as usual sooner instead of later.

An IRP should include preparatory actions, peoples’ roles and responsibilities, communication protocols, and more. It should also include a plan for restoring IT solutions and preventing future breaches.

2. Regularly update your IRP

From social engineering attacks to denial-of-service (DoS) threats, cybersecurity risks are always growing. So, your IRP should be evolving with them—that is, it needs to be regularly updated. It should reflect changes in your business, new threats, and lessons learned from previous incidents.

3. Contain the security breach

Once the breach has been identified, you need to stop it to prevent further damage. For example, you can turn the compromised IT solutions off, and isolate them from the rest of your IT environment. You can also revoke any privileges assigned to user accounts that may be exploited, along with changing passwords.

Apart from separating infected systems from the main network, containing a security breach also consists of thorough recordkeeping. You and your team should make note of any surface-level information that relates to the breach—what hardware has been impacted, when the breach occurred, what personal data has been compromised, etc. All steps to managing the breach must be recorded and evidence preserved. This is to help determine fault and to inform mitigation processes for the future.

4. Assess the breach

Effective data breach management calls for in-depth assessments. These examinations uncover the extent of the breach’s damage and the ramifications it could have on your business’s public standing. Additionally, the information you gather will help you paint a full picture of the situation, making it easier for your organization to respond to the breach and formulate future data privacy and security plans.

5. Notify the affected parties

It is important to remember that security risks impact more than just IT solutions. Withholding information from your customers can damage your organization’s reputation, leading to less revenue and possible closure. And in the case of certain industries, notifying entities within the specific timeframes identified (depending on the data involved) is a regulatory requirement. For example, the healthcare industry’s HIPAA Breach Notification rule

After a breach has been taken care of, it is crucial to be transparent in your communication with the affected parties. Your communications should contain all the information you have on the breach and the supportive services you will offer your customers.  

6. Conduct regular security audits

Regular security audits identify vulnerabilities in your system, helping you address them before they can be exploited. You should conduct a data privacy and security assessment on a routine basis. That way, you will be able to frequently patch up any holes in your IT solutions and business.

7. Train your employees

Employees are the first line of defense against cybersecurity risks, and they are often the greatest agents for data breach management. Once your people understand the importance of cybersecurity and how to identify/respond to potential risks, your organization’s data privacy and security measures will be strengthened.

Cybersecurity training can include how to identify phishing attacks, the importance of protecting data with strong passwords, the latest malicious codes, how to safely collect and share data with co-workers, and much more.

8. Work with a cybersecurity service provider

A cybersecurity service provider can provide companies with the resources and expertise they need to prevent unauthorized access to IT solutions. Cyber-attacks are increasingly common, and protecting sensitive data is a responsibility no business can overlook. 

A cybersecurity provider offers a range of services—risk management, data privacy and security solutions, data breach management planning, IT compliance services, disaster recovery, and more—to protect business’ networks from any type of threat. 

Let the experts protect your business from cybersecurity risks

Data breaches are the bane of all organizations. But with foolproof data breach management practices dictating your business’s cybersecurity strategies, you can rest assured knowing that your IT solutions are safeguarded from threats. 

The cybersecurity experts at Davenport Group can support your company with a plethora of data privacy and security solutions to help you efficiently manage data breaches. If you are eager to create and implement a comprehensive data breach management strategy in your business, talk to the team today.