Although no one hopes for disasters, they are usually inevitable. So, it’s always beneficial to prepare ahead for them. Organizations are not immune to disasters, and data breach is a disaster that could cripple the information system of business organizations that don’t implement proper data breach tabletop exercises. In recent times, cyberattacks have been on the rise and data breaches, an outcome of these attacks, are becoming more frequent.
In the US alone, there were more than 1200 reported breaches in 2018. More than 446 million records were exposed. This reveals that businesses are at the heart of the problem.
Also, in 2017, ninety-one percent of the total number of files breached were controlled by business enterprises. Analysts estimate that the global cost of cybercrime has now reached about $600 billion dollars annually, that’s approaching 1 percent of the world’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Creating an incident response plan, which is the first stage of data breach tabletop exercise would help you defend your organization’s reputation and finances. It would also help to combat future incidents.
Next, train your team as you work towards preparing your organization’s cyberattack response tactic. Read more to know how you can use our data breach tabletop exercise template to prepare you in the event of a hack or intrusion. Learn how to conduct a data breach drill from start to finish.
What is a Data Breach?
A data breach is a violation of security, where privileged information has been accessed without legal permission. Data breaches can damage organizations and consumers in different ways.
The experience of a data breach can be very disastrous. It may not just devastate businesses and reputations, but may also take time to repair the effects.
According to Symantec, personally identifiable information — such as full names, credit card numbers, and social security numbers — was the most common form of data lost to data breaches in 2016, with personal financial information close behind.
Companies and businesses are high targets for cyber-attacks owing to the enormous amount of information available to be stolen in one instance.
Examples of Data Breaches
The following are four key examples of breaches you need to defend your system against:
This happens when an attacker steals information and extorts you for payment. When this takes place, you’ll lose access to your data, and your productivity is affected.
Most times, payments do not solve the problem. Facts taken from a report reveals that in 2018, 45 percent of U.S. companies that were hit by a ransomware attack paid the ransom, but only 26 percent of those companies had their files unlocked.
Malware is a term that describes attacks where spyware and viruses infect a computer system. These viruses spread from system to system, thereby causing havoc.
Phishing is a common form of cyberattack. In this form of attack, the recipient gets an email that contains links or attachments. The minute you click on these links, viruses are introduced into the system.
Denial of Service (DoS)
Another type of data breach affecting businesses is known as Denial of Service (DoS) attack. This attack shuts down an entire network, cuts off access to its owners, and crashes the network system.
Breaches from Employees
There are also other causes of data breaches, some of which may be accidental. For example, a member of staff may cause a data breach when their device gets lost or stolen, and information is accessed.
Causes of a Data breach
Cybercriminals seek private information to steal money, compromise personalities, or trade information. Data breaches can happen for different reasons. Some of these reasons are:
- Obsolete software creates a vacuum that allows hackers to introduce malware into a computer and steal the data.
- Easy-to-decipher passwords: when passwords are not complex, in combination, they become easy for hackers to unravel.
- Downloads from unsecured web pages is another path by which hackers gain access to the system and steal information.
- Spam and phishing emails are another method attackers may introduce malware into your system. It is best to avoid using links or attachments from these sources.
All of the above is inevitable, so it is advisable to be proactive enough, to defend your data against any onslaught that may affect your organization. The way forward is simply by executing a Data Breach Tabletop Exercise.
Read more to know what a Data breach Tabletop Exercise means, who should be involved in the exercise, and how to conduct a data breach drill.
A tabletop exercise (TTX) is an activity carried out to prepare for an imminent disaster. Participants are taken through the process of dealing with a simulated disaster scenario. This activity is discussion-based and not only does it help participants to get familiar with the response process, but it enables administrators to gauge the effectiveness of the organization’s emergency response practices.
The committee members painstakingly study and evaluate the strategies to be used in case of an emergency. These strategies are formulated and tested in a casual environment.
During these exercises, existing positions and tasks are used to demonstrate possible solutions to a simulated attack. This helps to develop blueprints and how to execute them when a data breach occurs.
These exercises involve the inclusion of team members to handle the reaction to a simulated event. It will also allow employees to increase their productivity and seek ways to boost responses to actual occurrences.
How to Conduct Data Breach Tabletop Exercises
A well-prepared incident response strategy will first define all breach scenarios and the specific steps to be taken to forestall them.
Assembling a qualified team is also critical. Individual roles and responsibilities should be defined and communicated. After finalizing the essential components of your incident response plan, regular testing is crucial to ensuring that your organization is equipped to handle the unexpected.
6 Principles for an Effective Data Breach Drill
- You need the help of an expert to utilize their skill, and mastery of someone to run the drills. An external moderator allows you and your organization to concentrate on personal assignments and roles.
- Create ample time for the exercise with your team.
- Everyone needs to be involved in the process.
- Anticipate unforeseen outcomes; data breach tabletop exercise should contain various crises and predicaments.
- A recap session of all that occurred during the tabletop exercise is priceless. The whole group involved should talk about the simulated experience. Then they’ll be able to identify sectors that require improvement.
- The drill should be continuous as growth is ongoing in the area of cybersecurity. It can be conducted once every six months.
Data Breach Tabletop Template
Tabletop drills help companies assess several risk schemes and become ready for possible cyber attacks.
You’ll find some samples of a drill template here. These templates take less than 15 minutes.
They’re a useful means for setting your team in the cybersecurity consciousness. Each procedure will outline the strategies that will be assessed, threats that are spotted, and the assets that are affected.
The place of a cybersecurity specialist in conducting a data breach tabletop exercise is too important to be overlooked.
Any organization’s goal is to maximize profit and minimize loss. However, hiring the services of an expert is a worthy and valuable investment.
It will also lead to a boost in the protection of your organization’s data. The expert will assist in scanning your whole information system and the various roles in your organization.
You’d get help to define the right security procedure, strategies, and devices that will guarantee an outstanding notch of security for your organization.
Are you ready to begin your drill? Do you require the services of top-notch cybersecurity experts? Reach RSI Security today.