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Reducing Risk & Fraud

Why Backup is a Critical Part of Your Cybersecurity Strategy

Eric Flick
Jun 5, 2019

It is often overlooked, but it is important to note that backup is a critical part of your cybersecurity strategy. What does backup have to do with your cybersecurity strategy? Backup is a back-office process. Cybersecurity is a frontline approach.

Although there are several frontline and defensive-minded approaches that are more critical than backup, backup is often overlooked. It’s an important part of your multi-layered approach to cyber readiness.

While we all think a security breach won’t happen here, or it won’t happen to me, the reality is that it will. So, when it does happen how well are you prepared to defend and recover?

As you think about a ransomware attack, one of three things is going to happen:

  1. Your current defenses, including employee education are going to work as designed and the attack will be averted.
  2. You become infected and opt to scrub your systems and fully restore quickly and seamlessly from your backup solution.
  3. You become infected, don’t have the ability to fully restore quickly and seamlessly, and thus pay the ransom to get your systems back.

I said earlier I know what some of you are thinking, and now I can hear some of you screaming: “Wait, wait! There are way more than those three. There are variations and subpoints to each of those three statements.”

Maybe there are, but here’s the thing: Isn’t there immense pressure and a high level of time sensitivity to returning to normal following the incident? Think about your customers, and your ability to serve them. If your critical IT systems are locked up with ransomware, how much time do you really have between “time of incident” and “returned to normal”?

This is where your backup solution plays such a critical role when answering the question of “Do I pay the ransom, or not?” If you have a backup solution in place that is off-site and isolated from the same ransomware that just took you out, you’re in a much better position when it comes to answering this question.

You can then look to:

  • Quickly isolate the threat
  • Identify the infected systems
  • Scrub them to a bare metal state
  • Begin the restoration process

A key component here will be the determination of when the infection occurred so that you can make sure that you are restoring from your backup solution at a point when you were still clean.

Having the right partner to work with you on your cyber strategy is critical. You should ensure that your partner can deliver an end-to-end strategy that provides total protection from the frontline to the back-office. Each and every step in your multi-layered cybersecurity strategy is equally important.

This really is a “weakest link in the chain” conversation. We all know the best way to avoid this is by having no weak links in the chain. By ensuring a thorough and comprehensive backup solution is part of your strategy, you are strengthening your defenses and improving your odds. Most importantly, you’re better positioning yourself to be available to your customers, whenever they need you, which these days we know is all the time!

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