Higher risk means better strategies needed
SECURITYBy BiztechAfrica - June 25, 2012, 11:28 a.m.
Information is the lifeblood of business. Valuable corporate data is available to employees, business partners and contractors. It is accessed locally, in the cloud and virtual environments, providing instant access to non-public sensitive information. Making matters worse, employees typically do not ask permission to load third-party software or applications on their laptops and mobile phones, devices that are connected to their companies' networks and data stores.
The convenience and business value of "information anywhere" comes with risk. While companies want to support devices, software and applications that enable employees to get the job done, they must do so while carefully monitoring and managing business risks related to the use of information and IT.
“One solution is information security everywhere, but this is impractical and unachievable. Organisations need to determine when convenience results in too much risk and what should be done to limit risks. This is a major challenge, especially when you consider that most organisations cannot answer the simple question, ‘What is our information risk today?’” says Bruce Goodwill, Sales Director – EMEA, LATAM and Australia at AVG.
A good place to start, he says, is to treat online security the same way that businesses treat corporate governance and brand protection, and make it a boardroom issue. “This is not just a technology debate,” he points out. In addition, companies should protect, and keep protection updated for all computers and mobile computing devices that are brought in or taken home by staff, contractors, clients and visitors. Another measure is to promote strong password management, with password and username combinations that are not easy to guess and which include a combination of letters and numbers.
“Many businesses assume that because they have security software installed on their PCs, they are protected. However, the threat landscape is growing exponentially. In addition to increasing malware attacks via the Web, companies need to be wary of mobile devices that connect to their networks, and the risks posed by social networks and disgruntled employees. In order to manage this, organisations should begin by defining the business risk from the top down and then prioritising them,” Goodwill says.
As a basis, an effective security software suite will keep the bulk of threats at bay on a company’s PCs and laptops. Some, like AVG Internet Security, provide additional defences against attacks via social networks through products like Linkscanner and Online Shield. This also applies to security software for mobile devices. Goodwill points out that with the number of mobile devices entering company networks today, mobile security software has become as essential as PC and server protection.
MORE SECURITY NEWS
Managed security services grows in EMEAThe managed security services market in EMEA is experiencing rapid growth as the proliferation of targeted cyber attacks compel organisations to turn to MSS providers for their security needs, says Frost & Sullivan. Read More
Expert predicts ‘doom’ for corporate GhanaA cybercrime expert has warned that urgent steps must be taken to address the ‘incessant cybercrimes' impacting corporates in Ghana. Read More
Q3 2013 sees alarming growth in data threatsThe third quarter of 2013 was a turning point for malware writers specialising in mobile platforms, says Kaspersky Lab. Read More
Fortinet illustrates need for real world firewall testingSecurity solutions firm Fortinet has illustrated the significant difference in performance achieved by various Next Generation Firewalls under real world conditions. Read More
Cyber Security Africa to host the 2nd East Africa IT & Cyber Security ConventionAfter the success of the inaugural East Africa IT & Cyber Security Convention last year, the global event series for heads of ICT and security enters its second year. Read More
New guidelines for securing card dataThe international PCI Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) has published version 3.0 of the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and Payment Application Data Security Standard (PA-DSS). Read More
ARM, NetClean partner to stop child abuse contentSpecialist security distributor African Risk Mitigation (ARM) has partnered with NetClean in the fight against the proliferation of child sexual abuse images across Africa. Read More
Have you been breached?Given that recent research has revealed that the average advanced persistent threat lurks on a business network for hundreds of days before it is discovered, how do businesses tell that their network has been compromised? Read More
Surge in Java exploitsThe number of attacks using Java exploits surged to 14.1 million in the past year, says a new Kaspersky Lab study. Read More
FEATURED STORYGaming app introduces investors to trading
A new virtual stock market app is equipping would-be investors with the skills they need to trade.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHText messaging makes mama mbogas’ lives easier
Innovative students have initiated a programme using text messaging, to aggregate demand and save money for Nairobi’s ‘mama mboga’ vegetable sellers.