In today's digital landscape data is being generated swiftly, both personal and corporate. But, safeguarding sensitive data has become paramount, making data breaches a pressing concern for organizations across the globe. A data breach can result in exposure of sensitive data to an unauthorized person. The exposed data could be exploited for fraudulent activities, identity theft or even financial scams. Organizations failing to meet these requirements can face severe consequences.
In an exclusive interview with Rajeev Ranjan, Editor, Digital Terminal, Sujoy Brahmachari, Technology Evangelist and Information Security Expert, shared crucial insights about safeguarding data, effective cybersecurity practices, and essential actions to mitigate risks. This insightful conversation sheds light on strategies that organizations can adopt to boost their digital defenses in the ever-evolving digital world.
Rajeev: How should an organization prepare for a data breach before it happens?
Sujoy: Any organization should be ready to handle a data breach before it happens. Good preparation can significantly reduce the risk of business damage and simplify your response and recovery processes.
These pointers will be useful to be prepared
Conduct a risk assessment
Create trained incident response team:
Implement right solutions after risk assessment outcome
Do periodic cyber security awareness program within organization and rest supply chain
It is important to have technological solutions to ensure data security and respond to data breaches.
Some of these solutions can be followings apart from NextGen Firewalls, Endpoint protections.
Threat detection and monitoring tools
Data loss prevention systems
Access management solutions
User and entity behavior analytics (UEBA) etc.
Also, consider employees as your main line of defense. Conduct regular cybersecurity training. In training sessions, explain what data breach risks. What are attack techniques used by cybercriminals and what employees should do to ensure data security. There are simulation tools to do these trainings.
Rajeev: Can an organization detect the data breach on its own?
Sujoy: Some types of data breach symptoms
Log management server or web servers shows that there is a search of vulnerability in your network
Buffer overflow attempts against a database server
Multiple failure login attempts from unknown system
Bounce back email with suspicious contents
Rajeev: What immediate incident response actions should an organization take?
Sujoy: When a data breach is detected, you should take urgent steps for a thorough investigation to find the root causes of the data breach.
The first is to record the date and time of detection as well as all information known about the incident at the moment. Then the person who discovered the breach must immediately report to those responsible within the organization. Information security officers should also restrict access to breached information to prevent the further spreading of leaked data. Also immediately gather data from all your cybersecurity solutions, servers, and network devices and also collect information from your affected employees. If you have event correlation system, it will easier and quick to find the root cause.
Next step is to contain affected systems to avoid spreading and also to prevent the destruction of evidence that can help investigate the incident. Once done, start the eradication process, if the breach occurred because of an insider threat, Information security office should disable all accounts that leaked information. If the threat was external, such as malware, clean up the affected system and patch exploited vulnerabilities, change passwords etc. Information security officer should monitor the network, recovered systems to ensure that the threat no longer exists.
Rajeev: What is your small piece of advice to the Information Security officers?
Sujoy: Preparedness to respond to and investigate data breaches in a timely manner will strengthen the business continuity and enhance cybersecurity setup of any organization. Coordinated actions and a consistent approach can reduce the negative consequences of data breaches and significantly speed up the recovery process.