The Only Thing Worse Than Getting Hacked Is Not Knowing about It

June 24, 2016 Arctic Wolf Networks

Many organizations find out that they've been hacked through no effort of their own. Often, the FBI will be the first to break the news to an unsuspecting victim. Alternatively, a financial institution might start tracing an unusually high volume of credit card fraud to a certain business. This is how the most recent breach in the restaurant industry unfolded. According to Brian Krebs, banks actually reached out to him asking if popular restaurant chain CiCi's Pizza had been hacked. It turns out that not only had the company been breached, but that it happened because someone walked into their franchises posing as technical support for the point-of-sale system.

Even so, a substantial percentage of businesses believe that they have been breached – 80 percent, according to one survey by Duke University/CFO Magazine Global Business Outlook. They might not necessarily know how it happened, but at some point they figured out – maybe through one of the ways mentioned above – that their data had been compromised. 

Ignorance is not bliss

But how long did it take these businesses to catch wind of this? And did they subsequently do everything necessary to prevent it from happening again? To answer the first question, it was probably long enough that the breaches impacted the bottom line. In regard to the latter, even if they did patch the hole, the number of attack vectors is growing more quickly than most organizations, especially small and medium-sized businesses, can possibly contend with. 

This was one of several key discussion topics raised in a recent webinar hosted by InformationWeek titled "You've been hacked (You just don't know it yet)." As the number of connected devices continues to multiply, so too does the number of ways in which hackers can sneak onto networks. The webinar also touched on another alarming trend, which is that the demand for cybersecurity talent is increasing at an unsustainable rate. In the not-too-distant future, there will be more attack vectors than ever before trying to be guarded by a relatively tiny talent pool.

Small and mid-market organizations with limited spending power will be in the impossible position of deciding what security services to invest in. Weeks of contemplation and thousands of dollars later, a bank or a law enforcement agency will come knocking on their door with the unfortunate news that they've been breached, or a hacker will be demanding a ransom if they ever want access to their data again. 

'Protect, detect and respond' with MDR

Another important takeaway of the recent webinar was the fact the SMBs are becoming the preferred target over large enterprises because they don't typically have the right tools to "protect, detect and respond" to cyberthreats. This isn't because they can't afford the tools they need, but because the out-of-the-box solutions they have aren't necessarily suitable for their unique network. 

According to guest speaker Brian NeSmith, co-founder and CEO of Arctic Wolf Networks, the best way to cost-effectively, and completely improve what he refers to as "security posture" is with a managed detection and response service that helps construct and manage a cybersecurity strategy that is appropriate for your organization. 

"Construct and manage a cybersecurity strategy that is appropriate for your organization."

"We have the security engineer and the machine analytics also married with all the different types of threat feed data to provide that continuous assessment," NeSmith said in explanation of AWN's MDR services. "We'll make you aware of whether you have breaches or exposures that need to be remediated immediately."

A last step in MDR is to create summaries that IT staff can use to guide executive buy-ins for certain cybersecurity solutions. 

Your organization may not be able to ever completely avoid a breach. But with MDR, you can minimize the likelihood that it will happen, improve detection when it does and respond quickly in the aftermath. 

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