10 Updates

Out of Touch With IT? Survey Shows Most American Execs Are

Jan 29 2014, 3:08pm CST | by

Many American executives are out of touch with their IT department, putting them at risk for security issues and data loss. When surveyed by PricewaterhouseCoopers, more than 9,300 high-ranking...

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26 weeks ago

Out of Touch With IT? Survey Shows Most American Execs Are

Jan 29 2014, 3:08pm CST | by

Many American executives are out of touch with their IT department, putting them at risk for security issues and data loss. When surveyed by PricewaterhouseCoopers, more than 9,300 high-ranking executives gave answers that were often vastly different from what officials found.

The survey was conducted in 2012 in a cooperative effort between the US Secret Service, the FBI, and Carnegie-Mellon’s software engineering institute. While executives were polled in 128 different countries, most of the respondents were located either in America or Europe. Overall, there were discrepencies in almost every category between what respondents believed and what was true. For instance, more than 42 percent of those questioned stated that they considered their organizations front-runners in the area of IT security. However, when compared to requirements set by the group coordinating the survey, only 8 percent qualified as true leaders.

These differences are notable because, as the survey revealed, corporations are putting less resources into IT security, with spending on training and in-house IT security expertise down. While the number of breach instances were down during the period this survey covered, the recent security breaches at major retailers show that attacks often happen when businesses least expect it.

Whether your business is a massive corporation or an SMB that outsources its IT security to a cloud services provider, it’s important that you remain aware of your business’s IT security operations at all times. If PricewaterhouseCoopers quizzed you this year about your company’s security procedures, how would your answers measure up?

IT security is an important issue to busineses today. There are several measures you can take to boost your awareness of your IT department’s activities, while also reducing your chance of a disastrous security breach.

Have Written Policies

Every organization should have a set of written security policies in place that extend beyond the IT department. Department heads across the organization should be on board with these policies, passing them down to every team member. These policies should reviewed on an annual basis to address any new issues that have arisen as technology within the organization has changed.

In cases where storage and data recovery processes are outsourced to a third party, written policies are more important, not less. Your contract with the vendor should cover your individual needs, but you should also have in-house policies regarding password security, restricted access to crucial systems, and personal devices on the network. You should also check with your cloud services provider on any third-party services they use.

Set Server-Level Restrictions

High-level executives have the power to request certain restrictrictions that can be set at the server level. When a business’s leadership works side by side with IT staff, policies can be put in place that force certain security measures. When users change passwords every 90 days, for instance, they can be required to choose a strong password, consisting of a combination of a certain number of letters, numbers, and special characters. For mobile device users, your server administrators can set up a policy that remotely wipes a smartphone or tablet that has been stolen or misplaced.

Since many security breaches occur at the hands of an organization’s own employees, fully trusting employees is a mistake. Internal security risks are often unintentional, caused by human error. When measures are put in place to protect an organization against these mistakes, a business can dramatically reduce its risks.

Understand Liability

Executives may be at an even greater risk than they realize. As the ultimate overseer of a business, CEOs and presidents are often the go-to people when something goes wrong. “I didn’t know” isn’t considered a valid defense, since business owners are expected to know the day-to-day activities of each of their departments.

When a HIPAA breach occurs, responsibility now extends to the Chief Executive, as well as any business associate contractors and subcontractors involved. Even in instances where government regulations aren’t at play, business leaders are often the parties who must answer questions when something goes wrong.

Of course, the ultimate danger to any business that has a data breach is that business’s survival. According to Symantec, the avereage cost of a data breach is $7.2 million, averaging out to $214 per compromised record. After a data breach, a business often experiences a loss of trust from its valued customers, with many of those customers potentially never returning. A company the size of Target may be able to recover due to a long, positive track record, but a smaller business with a shorter history may have to shut its doors completely.

Have a Disaster Recovery Policy

In addition to protecting against data breaches, businesses should also consider the impact of a disaster. Whether a company faces threats from hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, fires, or a combination of any of the above, no building is 100 percent safe. Servers should be backed up regularly with data stored off site in a secure, disaster-protected facility. The disaster recovery plan should outline a contingency plan, as well, in the event a business’s office is uninhabitable for several weeks. Will employees be able to work from home? Is there an alternate location where temporary operations can be set up?/>/>

Like other written IT policies, the disaster recovery plan should be revisited on an annual basis. Some businesses bring in an outside consultant to help with creating and maintaining the plan, bringing years of expertise as well as an objective party into the process. For businesses interested in tackling the task on their own, the Small Business Administration provides a step-by-step guide that can help.

While hiring the right IT security professionals is vital, simply putting experts in place and stepping away isn’t sufficient for today’s volatile technology environment. Executives must work closely with technology experts to ensure the best interests of the business are being represented. When both sides work together to craft written policies, these policies not only ensure they’re working together, but they’ll also provide a document that can be passed on to employees, contractors, and investors.

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
10

7 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the Dewan Rakyat wa ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

7 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken into b ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

7 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

7 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Hi ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

7 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ i ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

7 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million in com ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

7 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Moh ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

8 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year involving an all ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

8 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramadan Bazaar Scheme ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
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1

8 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Damansara Skyway (Kidex) ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

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