What Is A Cybersecurity Audit And How Often Do You Need It
What is a cybersecurity audit? A cybersecurity audit extensively reviews a business's information technology (IT) infrastructure. The auditors do rounds of checking to see if sound policies, procedures, and guidelines are in place and are being implemented by management. They also confirm if the current methods your company has are working effectively.
Additionally, conducting a cybersecurity audit helps identify and address security and compliance weaknesses.
With a thorough assessment, the organization will gain a comprehensive overview of its systems and insights into the best way to address vulnerabilities to avoid a data breach.
Read: What is Cybersecurity? Everything You Need to Know
When planning for an audit, consider getting a qualified and experienced professional, preferably a third party. Hence you can hire Techadvisory.com or any technology company that offers cybersecurity audit services.
Continue reading to learn more about the process of cybersecurity auditing and how often do you need it.
What Does A Cybersecurity Audit Assess
Some aspects of information security that a cybersecurity audit enhances include the following:
1. Data Security
Data is the lifeblood of a modern IT system and the secret source. This includes the following:
Sensitive customer information; and
Important business plans.
Cybersecurity audit helps you to implement measures to safeguard your data. These include the following:
To govern data security, you need to have a policy – a detailed plan on how to protect information. In that policy, you need to classify data in terms of their sensitivity or confidentiality and the kind of protection that those layers of data need.
Once you've done that, you can put on measures to recover data in case it gets lost via backup.
You have to actualize the preconceived notion of where your data is by tracing and discovering where all your data actually is. To achieve this, you can look in your files, network, databases, and any other storage area where you may have stored your information.
This step allows you to put measures in place to protect your information by, for example, encrypting it so that if it leaks out of your business, cybercriminals can't read it. The other measure you can also put in place is access controls.
Read: 4 Best Cybersecurity Practices For Your Business
With data security, you can safeguard your digital information throughout its entire life cycle.
2. Operational Security
Operation security is identifying critical information, analyzing how adversaries might learn this vital information, and taking the necessary measures to prevent cyber hackers from interpreting or piecing together crucial information.
Operational security protects sensitive information from adversary observation and collection. This type of security is mainly used in the military to protect information that rivals or terrorists shouldn't know, like the equipment they're using and the location of the friendly forces.
In a corporate example, you may not want your competitors to know the following:
The project you're working on;
Secret ingredients or chemical makeup for your products; and
New technologies your following product will have.
The cybersecurity audit team helps implement controls, procedures, and policies to keep information about your organization's operations safe. These may include implementing a strong password policy and educating your employees on the importance of operational security.
Read: The Future of Software Development
3. Network Security
As technology improves, organizations' security posture must be enhanced as well. Network security is a set of technologies that protect the usability and integrity of a company's infrastructure. It protects the entry or proliferation within a network of various potential threats.
Read: Cybersecurity Trends: What's coming in the next 5 years
Cybersecurity auditors update or implement tools that protect the network and the applications that run over it. Some of these network security tools that the audit team can help you implement include the following:
Network monitoring; and
The abovementioned network security tools will help protect your network from cyberattacks.
4. Physical Security
Physical security describes security measures designed to protect personnel, data, IT servers, networks, hardware, and software from physical actions that could cause physical harm or loss.
Whether you run a small business or a big organization, prioritizing safety and implementing robust physical security measures is critical.
Read: Top 10 IoT Security Threats and Solutions
One way auditors help you achieve physical security is through risk assessment and identifying potential safety risks, including floods, fire, and other natural disasters. Other risks include:
Intentional acts of destruction.
Hence, auditors can advise you on measures to put in place to safeguard your business from the abovementioned risks. Some may include:
Installing security cameras;
Using up-to-date door locks;
Limiting access to some rooms; and
Hiring security officers.
The examples above aim to protect both the business premises and physical devices that contain sensitive data.
How Often You Need A Cybersecurity Audit
It's essential to conduct a cybersecurity audit at least once annually. Nonetheless, you may sometimes need intermittent cybersecurity audits within the year depending on different factors, which include the following:
The size of your company: If you have a large company, you need to conduct this type of audit several times because you have many systems, hence, more sophisticated procedures. On the flip side, you need a smaller number of audits if you’re a small organization.
Availability of resources: Cybersecurity audits are expensive. If you have adequate resources, you can do the audits several times.
Operational changes: Whenever you make big operational changes, conducting a cybersecurity audit is fundamental and non-negotiable.
Technology evolution: Technology is constantly advancing, and so are cybersecurity threats. Henceforth, cybersecurity audits should be a process other than a one-time process for any organization to keep up with this evolution.
Read: What is Automation, Types, Benefits and Trends
Cyberattacks are among the most popular crimes worldwide. Users have grown progressively worried about their data security and want to ensure that all their information remains secure and safe. That being said, businesses need to regularly check their IT infrastructure, as discussed in this blog.
Read: How long does IT take to learn Security+?
With a cyber security audit, you'll be able to secure your organization's digital assets from cyber threats and have systems that are procedure compliant.
Plus, by doing regular audits, your company will not only comply with the required cybersecurity standards but build trust internally with employees and other stakeholders, and clients as well.