How Cybersecurity Audits Can Benefit Manufacturers
Whether you’re a local small business or an international industrial operation, cyberattacks are formidable threats that can do considerable damage to your business. Perhaps most troubling is the reality that cyberattacks are, and always will be, moving targets. As technology evolves, so do the means by which people exploit it to target businesses. Phishing, ransomware attacks, data breaches, password theft, and other types of scams happen all the time – even for companies that think they’re sufficiently protected against them.
One of the best ways for businesses to deal with the evolving nature of these threats is to conduct cybersecurity audits regularly. Today, performing routine, in-depth reviews of cyber security measures is a critical component of effective business risk management. In addition to helping to protect businesses against cyber threats, information security audits ensure that organizations are compliant with laws and regulations.
How Manufacturers Are at Risk
With the usage of data and AI-powered automation steadily rising in the manufacturing sector, network connectivity is at an all-time high and showing no signs of slowing down. Manufacturers, particularly those that use legacy software and hardware, may find themselves exposed to threats for which their systems are wholly unprepared. The consequences of security breaches for manufacturers include operational disruptions, loss of data and IP, and even loss of life.
What Does a Cybersecurity Audit Do?
Audits help businesses in a variety of ways. Most importantly, they help them identify and fix cybersecurity risks and ensure compliance with government laws and regulations. Comprehensive audits can reveal much about a business's technology protocols, including:
- Performance of software and hardware systems
- Security vulnerabilities
- Effectiveness of current security procedures
- Active security threats
When To Perform a Cybersecurity Audit
The cadence of cybersecurity audits is dependent on several factors, including:
- The size of the organization
- Digital footprint
- The sensitivity of stored data
- Regulatory compliance requirements
- The current state of cyber threats and security risks
Many businesses elect to perform annual, comprehensive audits that may be supplemented by smaller-scale audits as needed.
How to Perform a Cybersecurity Audit
The first step when performing a cybersecurity audit is to determine the scope and intent. Perhaps you’re auditing hardware systems and infrastructure, or looking in-depth at data storage and transmission protocols. Determining the scope of an audit and documenting each step properly is critical to establishing consistency and reaping the most benefit from an audit.
From here, you’ll want to identify threats and plan remediation. Once you’ve identified the threats to your systems, be they malware, password and data theft, phishing scams, denial of service (DDoS) attacks, or other common cyber threats, you can plan your business’s response. Incident response plans typically include methods for addressing threat remediation, which often include software upgrades/changes and network segmenting, contingency plans for recovering data, comprehensive documentation of threats and procedural changes, and an outline of how to communicate changes to employees.
How Crescent Can Help
Here at Crescent, we understand the severity of the digital threats that businesses face in the modern age. Visit our Safety and Security hub to learn how we can help support your business, from security-focused products from top suppliers to 24/7 emergency support from knowledgeable industry professionals – we’re here to help.