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5 Vital Steps to a Successful Data Incident Response

March 16, 2020

So, you've been hacked. What is your incident response plan? If you don't have a plan ready to go for a security incident response, you could be in big trouble.

The average cost of a data breach has soared to $3.92 million. That's not money that you can afford to lose, and a good response can cut those costs.

Your business survival depends on a successful recovery. This is not something you can wing and you need to put a plan in place. We're here to help.

In this guide, we've assembled five steps that you need to follow to ensure a good recovery. Ready to prevent disaster for your business? Keep reading.

1. Discover What Kind of Breach You're Dealing With

Before you put your incident response plan into action, you need to uncover what kind of breach has occurred. 

Was the breach an outside or inside attack? Did the attacker steal or delete data? Is your network now infected with malware?

You need to have incident management strategies that can deal with each of these threats. No single plan will have the capacity to deal with all of them.

2. Containing and Neutralizing the Threat

This step could also be called containment. When you have identified the security incident, you need to deal with it.  

If the attack came from inside the building, you need to discover which employee was responsible and take any necessary action. If data was stolen, you should figure out whether any of it was sensitive. If data was deleted, you need to identify which files require restoration.

If your network is now playing host to malware, you need to deal with that malware before you continue. Isolate any devices that are infected and get to work.

You need to get your network back to a clean slate before continuing with your incident response plan.

3. Recover Your Files

If you have lost data, you will need to recover it. You should have kept backups of every important file on your network. If you have not, you're in trouble.

Presuming that you have, once the network is clean, restore your data. This step will get your company back in working order.

4. Communicate With Everyone You Need to

This step will be the hardest part for many businesses. It's time for you to report the data breach to everyone who needs to know.

This will include customers, regulatory bodies, shareholders, board members, and anyone else related to your company. You need to be honest. Never try and cover up a data breach, or you'll land yourself in even worse trouble.

5. Learn From Your Mistakes

In this final step, you need to learn from what went wrong. If you were attacked by an outsider, bolster security and educate employees on better internet security. 

If you were lacking in backups, you will need to start making them now. If the threat came from the inside, consider restricting employee access and finding out motives that you can address.

Get an Incident Response Plan

Incident response plans are something that you hope to never use. Yet they are essential.

We can help you make an incident response plan tailored to your business. Get in touch with us to learn more and ask us any questions!


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