Back to School: Lessons in cyber security

Originally published September 7, 2017

This year, not every business has been awarded an A* in cyber security. Be it an accidental data leak, an employee falling foul of phishing, or vulnerabilities that are yet to be patched, most companies have plenty of room for improvement.

With a new school term about to begin, six experts have come together to give a one-off class in effective cyber security. They discuss the lessons to be learnt from this year’s biggest attacks, and provide top tips that businesses should follow to ace the tests sure to come in the following months.

WannaCry ransomware: Thomas Fischer, global security advocate at Digital Guardian

“Without doubt the most high-profile cyber attack this year is WannaCry, which spread across the globe and severely impacted parts of the NHS. Attacks like this have been happening for years, but unfortunately we are either quick to forget, or simply don’t learn from past experiences. After all, the recommendations remain the same.

“All companies, big or small, must adopt a ‘patch early, patch often’ mantra. A regular review of system settings is needed. Also, don’t forget to disable unnecessary services open to attack. It is inevitable that hackers will, at some point, breach a network. In this case, ‘data aware’ technologies can prevent them from snatching sensitive data. Keeping customer data safe doesn’t take a huge investment, it just takes a smart one.”

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