Role Of A Cyber Security Specialist In A Growing Business

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Cybersecurity has immense importance for every business in today’s world regardless of size. With the ever-present threat of cyber-attack, more and more businesses even smaller ones are seeing that having cyber security specialists on their team is a solid investment. 

The role a cyber security specialist can play in a growing business is multi-faceted.

Why a business needs cyber security 

Most businesses nowadays have an online component that needs careful management as far as both data and financial transactions are concerned.

Cyber Security Specialist

Artificial intelligence and software play a huge role in safeguarding sensitive information such as customer data but a specialist is still needed to oversee these operations as well as to provide support to remote employees that are connected to a mainframe. 

All businesses need to proactively protect their data, intellectual property, customer and client information, employee data, sensitive financial information as well as company secrets which can theoretically all be compromised with a well-executed data leak or hacking attempt. A cybersecurity professional, often associated with an information security company, does not only deal with an adverse situation once it has occurred but also carries out and maintains all manner of preemptive protective measures.

Monitoring malware

Malware is a common threat that every company and even individuals must guard against. With businesses however the danger lies because a large number of devices are connected onto the same mainframe where information is being updated and shared leaving certain virtual loopholes for hackers. 

A cyber security professional will set up a firewall and a monitoring system to thwart any unauthorized attempts to access the business’s files or accounts. 

Malware is an ever-evolving threat as more and more viruses are created every day that are especially designed to escape detection and to resemble software that are commonly used commercially. Malware like the Trojan horse for example can appear to be a file similar to ones already found in the data and therefore may go completely undetected by the untrained eye. Go for Managed SIEM services to free your internal team to do what it does best.

Canvasing existing protocols

Most businesses use antiviruses and similar practices to guard against hackers but a cyber security specialist will review these monitoring systems to determine whether they are a good fit for the information and money that is at stake. 

After thoroughly evaluating and canvasing the protocols that exist, the specialist will implement new ones where loopholes exist. Implementing data security measures and introducing adequate software protection is part of the role of the cyber security specialist. 

VPN (virtual private network)

Many businesses globally since the last decade have taken to outsourcing their work to remote employees and independent contractors. 

2. Connect using a VPN or Seedbox

With so much sensitive information on the business’s preferred communication channels, the cyber security specialist has a job to protect the data transmission and to provide VPN or virtual private network access to those employees. In this context, integrating advanced network security solutions, such as those offered by technologies akin to the Meraki MX250, becomes critical. 

These systems are designed to accommodate a diverse range of business needs while ensuring the utmost data protection, offering robust features that safeguard against external threats and enhance data sharing efficiencies for remote teams. The way data is disseminated is also organized so that employees know as much as they are supposed to and sensitive documents do not fall into the wrong hands.

Determining the use of the data is also partially decided by the cyber security specialist. A cyber security specialist in that way is very similar to a SOC 2 auditor who will evaluate how well customer data is being protected by a business according to a set standard. 

Carrying out staff training 

While many of the aspects of cyber security and online hygiene seem self-explanatory, it is often simple mistakes or negligence on the part of company employees that can lead to a big data leak or hacking attempt.

Leaving a device untended, not reporting malware or suspicious activity or not carrying out the practices of good cyber hygiene when using the company computers and accounts can all have a catastrophic outcome. 

Among other things, a cyber security professional will carry out adequate staff training in the form of seminars or interactive lectures so that employees are aware of the cyber threats facing businesses and can implement the right protocols during their handling of the business information and funds. 

Cyber security professionals also work in conjunction with the human resource department to ensure data is being shared and handled in the most conscientious manner possible. 

Immediate tech support 

If there is a cyber-attack, a specialist needs to be on board to handle it on the spot. If a business has not invested in having a cyber security professional on their team, they will see data loss occur along with disastrous financial consequences before they can jump in and salvage the situation. 

Reasons Why IT Support For Business Is Important

Hacking usually occurs in layers and a sound monitoring protocol set in place will usually alert the specialist before any real damage can occur. 

Protective collaboration

Cybersecurity specialists are usually part of a network or industry of tech professionals and many are in a state of constant communication and collaboration with their fellow cybersecurity experts.

In a growing business the scale of cyber threats is also expansive, therefore a vital role that cyber security specialists play is to learn new strategies and mechanisms to better serve the company.

A proactive defensive system is often said to be the best option as a weak firewall or monitoring system can sometimes cause damage to the business’s privacy and finances beyond repair. The adage ‘prevention is better than cure’ applies to cyber security as well. 

Data management

A lesser known role of a specialist is to protect and manage all the company’s data especially financial and consumer data. 

Importance of Data Management

Deciding the dissemination of information is part of the job of a cybersecurity specialist and he/she may make recommendations on the people who should or should not have access to certain levels of the company’s database. Internal threats and leaks are even more dangerous than outside unauthorized attempts at entry so the scale of monitoring needs to apply to both external and internal threat factors.

Furthermore having a record of how the data is being managed, where it is being stored, and who has access, also falls to the managed IT provider who must maintain an exhaustive record of all comings and goings. 

The strategies used, the controls, and the range of possible threats to be expected given the nature of the data should also be noted down in detail by the cybersecurity specialist.

IT forensic skills

Sometimes an unfortunate event occurs and there are serious and advanced malware attacks and hacking attempts at a business’s information and digital accounts. IT or digital forensic skills exclusively found in cybersecurity specialists and related professionals can come in very handy to trace the source of those attacks. 

Not only is sound decision making and an ability to handle stress very important in such instances but advanced IT forensic skills can curb the extent of a cyberattack and also prevent them from happening in the future.

Many cybersecurity specialists have been trained to think like a cybercriminal and to learn hacking techniques themselves so the mechanisms used for hacking are apparent to them. Programming skills and in-depth knowledge of operating systems are part of the knowledge a cybersecurity specialist brings to the table that helps him/her retrieve lost data and protect data banks.

Risk analysis

Growing businesses particularly small and medium sized enterprises are always purchasing and incorporating new software and technology that can optimize any aspect of production, management or provide organizational improvement but the job of the cybersecurity specialist is to vet out possible threats and implications.

Both existing and new systems are studied in detail by a cybersecurity professional to identify deficiencies and to come up with a strategy to eliminate risk systematically. Carrying out audits after a reasonable time period has passed (methods such as advanced penetration testing) are very helpful preemptive measures to take. 

If a software has been initiated successfully, running diagnostics on it to pick up on malware or any kind of malicious activity is part of good online hygiene practices carried out by a professional.

Reassuring clients & security reports

A cybersecurity professional is in a unique position to reassure clients or stakeholders who are investing their time and money into the business.

Fortify your security wall

By having a session with them or communicating with them through virtual means, the cybersecurity professional can show them the security infrastructure and the existing systems in place so they may conduct their financial transactions and investments without fear of a hacker getting hold of their information or money.

Cybersecurity specialists are also routinely required to come up with security assessment reports so all malware is reported and the contingency plans are also outlined for any large client or investor to read. Not only can this role result in return business from larger clients, it can go a long way in creating customer trust and market standing. 

Disaster recovery

If a business has already been victim of a cyber-attack or data loss, the cyber security specialist needs to have an operational plan in place so that the business’s operations, websites and accounts are unblocked, retrieved and up and running as soon as possible. 

Depending on the scale of the incident, business continuity may take some time but it is the cyber security professional’s job to ensure that time lag is as short as possible so the business does not suffer heavy financial losses or its share in the market due to dwindling customer trust.

Conclusion 

In light of the emerging threats of having a commercial online presence today, hiring and having a cyber security specialist on one’s team is more important now than ever before. 

These specialists monitor and counter threats, come up with emergency plans and backups, protect all kinds of business data, and explore how and why certain malware are able to infiltrate firewalls. The job is a combination of both detective and manager and is crucial for a growing business to invest in.

About the author 

Peter Keszegh

Most people write this part in the third person but I won't. You're at the right place if you want to start or grow your online business. When I'm not busy scaling up my own or other people' businesses, you'll find me trying out new things and discovering new places. Connect with me on Facebook, just let me know how I can help.

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