What to do if your business experiences a cyber breach

What to do if your business experiences a cyber breach

With Optus and Medibank both experiencing a recent cyber breach, it’s essential that you know how to tackle a similar problem. After all, if these large companies can be breached, it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that it can happen to your business as well. That’s despite having an up-to-date cyber security system in place.

Given that protecting your business from all threats is one of your priorities, one of your first steps should involve improving your cyber security. Another step is to create an Incident Response Plan so everyone knows what to do if a data breach occurs. Finally, you should ensure you consult an insurance adviser so you can be adequately protected if the worst does occur. 

So, what steps should you include in your cyber plan?

STEP 1: Confirm that a cyber breach has occurred

Depending on your cyber security, you may be alerted to a cyber breach via your own IT systems, by your bank, customers, law enforcement officials or the actual cybercriminal. Before you do anything, you need to verify that a breach has occurred. So having a capable IT team onsite is important, but if not, then it’s wise to engage with an external cyber security team who can detect the breach.

STEP 2: Contain the breach

A data breach at your business must be contained as soon as possible. It’s the best way of protecting your business from further intrusions by the same scammer. You need to isolate your systems, take your servers and computers offline and contain the threat because the sooner this happens the better the outcome. The only thing worse than a cyber breach is multiple breaches because you didn’t secure your system after the first breach.

STEP 3: Assess the severity of the breach & preserve evidence

The next step in protecting your business is to assess the severity of the breach and preserve as much evidence as possible for forensic analysis. Identify what data has been breached and whether any customer information has been accessed. Don’t panic and wipe your systems or reinstall the software. Your team of cyber security experts will need your compromised systems to track down the perpetrator and discover how the data breach occurred.

STEP 4: Notify relevant third parties

Notify any customers and other relevant individuals (banks, financial institutions, senior management, suppliers, stakeholders, and so on) and lock all your accounts down to prevent further breaches. Under the NDB (Notifiable Data Breach) you might also need to notify the OAIC if it’s a notifiable breach. 

STEP 5: Review your cyber security 

You need to know how this cyber breach occurred, fix the problem and review your entire cyber security system so that it doesn’t happen again. Whether you handle all of this internally or engage an outside firm depends on your situation. However, a professional review of your cyber security is essential for protecting your business after a confirmed data breach.

If your business already has Cyber Insurance then you need to inform your insurance provider as soon as possible once a data breach has been confirmed. If you don’t have Cyber Insurance, then it might be wise to explore your options with an insurance expert. 

Contact one of our insurance specialists today. 

Important Information 

This communication including any weblinks or attachments is for information purposes only. It is not a recommendation or opinion, your personal or individual objectives, financial situation or needs have not been taken into account. This communication is not intended to constitute personal advice. This type of insurance product is designed for small and large businesses, that want to be covered against financial loss relating to accidents or personal injury involving contractors or sub-contractors.

We strongly recommend that you consider the suitability of this information, in respect of your objectives, financial situation and needs before acting on it. This document is also not a Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) or a policy wording, nor is it a summary of a particular product’s features or terms of any insurance product. If you are interested in discussing this information or acquiring an insurance product, you should contact your insurance adviser to obtain and carefully consider any relevant PDS or policy wording before deciding whether to purchase any insurance product.

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