The 6 Phases of Incident Response for Data Breaches
Cases of data breaches are becoming rampant; we hear about them in the news all the time. Recent trends have shown that no one is safe from the malicious intents of crooks in cyberspace. Every day, companies of all sizes and across all sectors are exposed to emerging and more advanced security threats.
Therefore, having strong cybersecurity is no longer enough; you must recognize the value of having an incident response plan (IRP) in place.
What is IR Plan, and Why is it Important?
It is a straightforward document outlining the instructions that offer a structured approach to detecting, resolving, and restoring the damage resulting from a cybersecurity incident. The plan aims to immediately respond to a breach event before it leads to a more complicated situation. It identifies and specifies the role and responsibilities of the Computer Security Incident Response Team (CSIRT).
It isn’t easy to completely prevent all attacks. An elaborate IR plan helps assess how your business can alleviate the adverse outcomes in case of a breach. In addition, a robust security plan can help you anticipate risks and provide business continuity solutions to stay afloat.
Phases of Incidence Response
When setting up an IR plan to address possible security breach incidences, it’s important to note that the response occurs in a series of phases, with each phase comprising specific areas of need that you must pay attention to.
It is the first, the most crucial, and the workhorse of your IR planning. In this phase, the CSIRT reviews and codifies a security policy, conducts risk assessment, identifies sensitive assets, and defines critical security incidents that should be prioritized. Also, in this phase, ensure your employees are trained on data breach and their roles and responsibilities, develop incident response drill scenarios, and ensure aspects of your incident response plan are approved and adequately funded.
As the name suggests, the phase involves identifying if you’ve been breached or if your systems have been compromised. Once you notice a deviation from normal operations, the security team should identify threats from firewalls, log alerts, and other anomalous activity on the network.
Once the IR team ascertains a threat, the focus should be to prevent further damage to other systems and the organization as a whole. The goal of containment is to restore business operations without losing everything once a breach is discovered. In this phase, the team should quickly isolate any infected machines and begin backing up any critical data on the infected system. Other critical actions include updating security systems and operating systems, strengthening administrative access, and inspecting your protocol configuration for remote access.
Once the issue is fully contained, your next course of action is to analyze and remove its root cause. The phase essentially involves doing what’s necessary to ensure malicious content is completely wiped from your system. You can perform an extensive scan for malware or apply basic security best practices such as updating software and disabling unused services.
In this phase, your goal is to bring all systems back to full operation after verifying the removal of the threat. The team should decide when operations will be restored, test and verify the safety of the infected systems, and continue monitoring for malicious activity.
6. Lessons Learned
Once the breach incident is successfully mitigated and the business is back in operations, the CSIRT should compile all relevant information about the breach. A meeting should also be organized to discuss critical lessons from the breach. The importance of the meeting is to identify weaknesses in the system and address them to prevent such and similar incidences in the future.
Plan and Prepare for Security Incidents
No one wants to face the frustrating consequences of security breaches and cyberattack incidences. Unfortunately, the sad state of affairs is that no security system is strong enough to prevent all ever-evolving cyber threats. Therefore, it’s essential to plan and prepare to know what to do when breaches occur.
Thinline Technologies gives you an opportunity to build a robust incident response plan to prevent all kinds of threats. We understand what your business means to you, and we go the extra mile to help you protect it.
For assistance, contact our experts or call 410-453-9300.