IT departments have made cybersecurity management their top priority. Cyber attacks continue to increase in frequency, especially since cryptocurrency has made it possible for criminals to extort businesses without leaving a clear trail. Cybersecurity companies worldwide have raced to provide the best cybersecurity services to both businesses and governments. However, their services have become increasingly specialized to address different types of cybersecurity needs and threats.
What Are the Five Types of Cybersecurity?
Five Branches of Cybersecurity Management
Although we commonly think of cybersecurity as a single concept, modern cybersecurity experts have since broken it down into several dimensions. Today, more devices are connected to the internet than ever. Analog systems have faded into obscurity. New technologies likewise call for new cybersecurity strategies. As a result, no single approach can address all of the potential vulnerabilities. Cybersecurity companies have specialized their services into five branches that each focus on a specific scenario.
Some of these branches, including network security or application security, have been around for decades. However, several of these branches are relatively new, including cloud security and IoT security. Some cybersecurity services can provide protection on multiple fronts, while others specialize in a specific branch. Consider which situations apply to your company and how you can best protect your business.
1. Application Security
The field of application security, though not new, has undergone significant transformations in the past decade. Not long ago, applications were limited to personal computers, which meant that most security needs could be addressed by focusing on network security. However, since the advent of the iPhone and other mobile operating systems, our understanding of applications has broadened significantly. Application security now involves protecting data transfers between applications and devices, as well as ensuring applications cannot jeopardize other programs.
Perhaps the clearest example of application security is the prevalence of two-factor authentication (2FA). When 2FA is enabled, applications will ask for confirmation through another device, commonly a mobile phone. If your company uses a proprietary application to handle everyday tasks, consider implementing 2FA to reduce the risk of a data breach. 2FA protects against the most common type of cyber attack: phishing. Stolen credentials won’t grant immediate access to your system with 2FA enabled.
2. Network Security
Every business needs to invest in network security. The proliferation of Wi-Fi has increased companies’ exposure to cyber threats. For instance, many businesses offer free Wi-Fi to their customers. However, if your Wi-Fi network is unsecured, anyone can monitor all the traffic on the Wi-Fi network and potentially capture data such as logins and passwords. Worse yet, if your network is poorly configured, your public Wi-Fi could grant access to private data that should be on a secure network.
Even traditional Ethernet connections can come under attack. DDoS attacks flood your network with connection attempts, which can cripple your network or bring your website to a standstill. In many cases, these attacks are a distraction to divert your attention away from a more serious invasion. With 24/7 network monitoring tools, it’s possible to detect suspicious activity and defend your company’s network.
3. Cloud Security
The cloud was a foreign concept not long ago. Today, however, it’s essential for many businesses. Companies that operate in multiple locations as well as those that allow for remote work depend on cloud-based services for collaboration and seamless operations. Cloud storage gives businesses near-infinite capacity to hold data without up-front costs. Cloud computing can process tasks faster than even the most powerful desktop computers. However, with this convenience comes additional risk.
In the past, company data would be kept safe in a server room. Robust network security would ensure that only authorized administrators could access valuable data. In contrast, the cloud is accessible from anywhere. To protect their data, companies are turning towards software-defined networks and VPNs to access the cloud with greater security. Cloud-based applications can leverage application security techniques, including 2FA, to mitigate risk. Cloud storage can be monitored just as your local network is to spot suspicious activity.
4. IoT Security
IoT, or the Internet of Things, is more than a buzzword. Experts expect the IoT field to expand quickly as 5G networks become more commonplace. These networks allow for more connections, which means more devices will become connected to the internet. Smart home devices are a great example. However, many IoT devices are built with simplicity in mind. This means that cybersecurity is often overlooked. These devices can become vulnerabilities if not properly secured on your network.
If your company uses IoT devices, it’s important to invest more in network security. Since IoT devices will connect directly to your network, it’s possible to monitor their activity with cybersecurity software. Furthermore, IoT devices have repetitive, predictable functions, which means it’s easier to notice when one of them does something out of the ordinary. To strengthen your security, choose IoT devices that link to a secure hub. These devices operate on a secure network within your wider network.
5. Critical Infrastructure Security
We often take basic infrastructure systems for granted. The electrical grid, internet cables, traffic signals, security cameras, and many more public systems have gone digital. While this has made it easier for cities to control these systems, it also opens up vulnerabilities that cyber criminals could exploit. The field of critical infrastructure security has expanded considerably to meet this growing demand. This branch of cybersecurity is also notable for receiving far more government funding than others.
There is a growing concern that critical infrastructure would be targeted in a conflict with another nation. We’ve already seen instances of such attacks in modern times such as the STUXNET attack on Iran’s nuclear processing facilities. However, businesses don’t need to be as concerned with this branch of cybersecurity unless they actively work with local utility companies or produce components or software for governments.
What Are Cybersecurity Companies Focused On?
Cybersecurity companies today are in a constant arms race against cyber criminals. As criminals invent new methods to infiltrate and attack businesses, cybersecurity professionals strive to remain one step ahead. Currently, there is a heavy emphasis on providing 24/7/365 support via software that monitors computers, networks, and cloud connections. However, this software goes far beyond the traditional antivirus software installed on most computers. Older programs rely on a database of known viruses, but they cannot detect new threats easily.
Instead, modern programs are using pattern recognition with the help of AI-driven algorithms. If a program acts in a suspicious manner, the software can detect this behavior and quarantine it to prevent further harm. This method provides better protection than a database which could become useless if users or administrators fail to update their antivirus software. In addition, these modern tools can spot unusual behavior from a user’s account, whether it be due to compromised credentials or a disgruntled worker.
Cybersecurity Services (CSaaS)
Given the complexity of cybersecurity, many businesses are switching to a Cybersecurity-as-a-Service model. Instead of paying for software or hiring a dedicated expert, CSaaS allows companies to get full cybersecurity coverage across all areas for a flat monthly fee. It’s akin to an insurance payment. The CSaaS market is predicted to grow an astounding 16.8% annually. The simplicity of CSaaS and the fact that it scales with your company makes it extremely popular.
Best of all, opting for CSaaS doesn’t require advanced cybersecurity knowledge or complicated installations. Cloud-based tools can monitor your company from a distance. In addition, you get access to professionals who have experience in various cybersecurity fields. Instead of building a whole in-house team, you can quickly get up to speed by hiring a cybersecurity services provider.
Why Businesses Need Cybersecurity Support
Is professional cybersecurity management really necessary? Many small businesses seem to think that cybersecurity support is only for large enterprises. In reality, more small businesses are hit by cyber attacks than large enterprises. This is largely because criminals know that small businesses tend to overlook cybersecurity. However, the costs of a data breach can be overwhelming for SMBs. Prevention is always better than treatment.
Furthermore, many countries have adopted data privacy laws that require companies to protect consumers’ personal information. If your company hopes to do significant business in places like California, Brazil, or the European Union, they have to be compliant with these laws. Data privacy laws impose strict security requirements. Failing to comply could lead to large fines in addition to civil suits from consumers.
Managed Cybersecurity Solutions
Overall, the best approach for businesses today is to take the guesswork out of cybersecurity. Hire an expert cybersecurity service provider that can manage your cybersecurity for you. You’ll get the proper equipment and software you need, and the peace of mind that comes with knowing that your company is in good hands.
At Cyber Command, we protect businesses of all sizes from all manner of threats. Contact Cyber Command today to schedule your strategy meeting and learn more about how our cybersecurity management can protect your company.