Posted on May 19, 2021
How many times have you seen someone act like a cybersecurity threat couldn’t happen simply because it’s never happened before? “This organization has never been the victim of phishing. Our employees aren’t clicking suspicious links, so we don’t need to invest in training” is an example of this sort of thinking. So is “this vendor has never suffered a data breach, so it’s safe for us to do business with them.”
One of the fallacies you can run into when you’re in cybersecurity is the idea that only threats and risks that seem probable are likely to happen. But that’s not how cybercriminals view your security. The landscape of risk is constantly changing and criminals know that you’re already prepared for the sorts of threats you’ve faced before They also know that if they want to get into your networks and data, they need to launch attacks you’ve never dealt with. Fortunately, you can prepare for these threats by being proactive about your cybersecurity, rather than reactive.
Reactive cybersecurity is exactly what it sounds like. An attack happens, and your team responds or reacts, to the breach. The attack is discovered, the attacker repelled, the damage is assessed, and the clean-up begins. This is often the standard way we think about cybersecurity teams and controls. There is nothing inherently wrong with reactive security — this is part of the reason you’ve invested in cybersecurity controls — but when your entire security culture is reactive, that can be a problem. To be truly effective, your cybersecurity culture must be reactive and proactive.
Proactive cybersecurity is what you do before an attack. When your cybersecurity culture is proactive your team is committed to prevention rather than simply to responding to threats. This means investing in a strong defensive position, educating your employees about good cyber hygiene, and planning for risks your organization hasn’t yet encountered. Penetration testing — hiring hackers to test your system — is also part of a proactive cybersecurity strategy. Essentially, a proactive cybersecurity team accepts that there are methods of attacks they may not know about. Then they commit to learning about and preparing for as many attack scenarios as they can.
The best way to be proactive about your cybersecurity is to really see and understand your vulnerabilities, as an attacker would. SecurityScorecard’s Ratings allow you to do that by offering easy-to-read A-F scores. Our readings map your risk across 10 groups of risk factors, including web application security, network security, leaked information, and patching cadence.
We let you see where your organization is most at risk — if something hasn’t been patched, if stolen credentials are being sold, or if your web application is being targeted. Then we tell you what steps you need to take to secure your site and network so that your data is safe and protected.
Vendor management is the process an organization utilizes to assess and manage a third- or fourth-party vendor. Learn how SecurityScorecard can help.
Performing cybersecurity risk assessments is a key part of any organization’s information security management program. Read our guide.
Templates and vendor evaluations are needed to level that playing field, in a time efficient and fair way, so that the best vendors are chosen.
Co-founder and CEO, Alex Yampolskiy, speaks about the importance of measuring and acting on key indicators of cybersecurity risk.
You can’t manage what you can’t measure. Check out our list of the top 20 cybersecurity KPIs to track in 2021.
No waiting, 100% Free
Get your free scorecard and learn how you stack up across 10 risk categories. Answer a few simple questions and we'll instantly send your score to your business email.