DCN May 2016 - Page 13

centre of attention In addition, the seemingly ever increasing number of devices used by employees to undertake tasks ‘on the go’ means that private company information, once kept relatively safe in the preserve of the data centre, is now scattered across a range of endpoints (employee laptops, tablets, and smartphones). Each additional device provides another potential entry point for cyber criminals, or an opportunity for careless usage to result in a compromise of critical user credentials and/or data loss. So how can CIOs and CISOs explain the return on investment for a comprehensive security strategy in purely financial terms? The business case for security The good news is that evidence from studies such as the Verizon 2015 Data Breach Investigations Report help to provide justification for data loss prevention methods – the total number of compromised records drives the total cost of a data breach, because more widespread breaches result in a greater loss of customer trust. This means that mitigating factors (including data loss prevention measures) effectively reduce total breach cost by reducing the total number of records lost. Simply put, each lost record costs the enterprise money. So, while data loss prevention measures may not eradicate breaches, their value lies in minimising the total number of records lost, and therefore the overall financial damage. Perhaps most importantly, 40 per cent of the data loss incidents examined by the Council on Cybersecurity could have been prevented or mitigated by the following ‘quick win’ measures. To gain support from the C-Suite, mitigation strategies should also focus on incidents that could cause the CEO to make public statements or, can affect the valuation of the company. With that in mind, solutions and mitigation strategies should focus on approaches that are meaningful and actionable. 50 per cent effective in identifying malware. That said, AV still remains a valuable form of defence when implemented as part of a multilayered security stack, and in many cases is a requirement for regulatory compliance. Multi-factor authentication Real time data recovery The idea behind multi-factor authentication is that it embraces a ‘defence-in-depth’ security practice by adding another layer of defence to login processes. An example of two factor authentication (2FA) requires at least two independent credentials from the user – ‘something you know and something you have’ – a password (something you know) and your bank card (something you have), for example. These extra layers of defence make it more difficult for hackers to break into accounts, because even if one of the factors is compromised, a barrier to access still remains in place. Endpoint back up provides complete visibility and control over company data, by continuously and automatically backing up the data stored across a company’s entire range of endpoint devices. This not only provides security professionals with the ability to identify suspicious user behaviour and prevent data loss through malicious activity on their behalf, it also guards against one of the biggest security threats out there – ransomware. Ransomware works by encrypting all of the data on infected devices, then demanding the payment of a ‘ransom’ to a cyber criminal in order to unscramble the data. For businesses that do not have a back up solution in place, ransomware attacks can result in huge financial losses due to the inability to access your own data files. However, with a real time recovery solution focused on endpoints, all the backed up data can be restored by the end user within a few minutes, keeping downtime to a minimum. To conclude, while the number of data breaches is increasing to the point where it is likely that most companies will fall victim at some point, implementing a multi-layered security strategy can effectively mitigate the damage that is caused as a result. Also, by partnering with best-in-class security companies and implementing focused, action oriented solutions, the C-Suite can support a solid ROI. Antivirus protection In times gone by, back when mission critical data was stored within the confines of the data centre, the traditional antivirus firewall offered a far more effective method of protection. Antivirus (AV) software scans files to detect and remove malicious software by examining a database of known viruses or identifying suspicious behaviour. Many of these approaches are signature based that don’t defend against the newest malware threats. This means that the exponential growth of sophisticated malware types means that keeping the database up to date is a key challenge for antivirus providers and users, and has led industry experts to suggest that AV software is only 13