A study conducted by market research firm, Vanson Bourne, finds that more than a third of the UK’s universities are hit by a cyber attack every hour. This highlights the need for higher cybersecurity.

It also found that a shocking 87% of the university IT leaders surveyed had experienced at least one successful cyber attack.

Cyber-criminals are becoming more sophisticated. It’s clear that more time and money needs focusing on the development of IT departments in institutions such as these to successfully fight against cyber-attacks.

85% of respondents say they believe that in order to protect intellectual property, funding needs to be increased. 79% also say that they face reputational damage caused by an online hack.

A cyber attack can have devastating effects on anyone targeted, whether that’s a business or an individual. Private data and information is accessible and this can compromise an organisation’s security network.

How to protect your organisation against cyber attack

By implementing a number of simple steps and following online safety strategies, your organisation can work towards preventing online criminals from gaining access to your online data. This can stop them from damaging your overall reputation.

Here are a few tips:

Risks: You need to find your weak spots and clearly define your vulnerabilities. This ensures that your cyber-security strategy suits the organisation’s needs. It works towards improving these vulnerabilities.

Data encryption: Ensuring that data has encryption protects the confidentiality of your systems online. It also obscures information that is undecipherable without keys. This makes it much harder for any cyber-criminals to duplicate or use private information.

Ensure your database is secure: Databases are popular targets for online criminals. Keeping a close eye on what you store keeps you on top and one step ahead. It may be useful to use a separate database that offers protection features such as a firewall. This adds a significant amount of security.

Antivirus: The storage (and use) of sensitive data need protection. This means you should install antivirus protection. This is a simple task that can save you from a severe data breach.

Company policy: Creating a company policy that designates a small number of people to handle sensitive information will limit the chances of a cyber-attack taking place. Employees should all be working from the same rule book and be clear on the company policies and procedures. This results in a sturdy online safety strategy implemented across the company.

Preparation is Key

A cyber attack can happen at any time and to anyone.  The damage a data breach can have on an organisation can be irreparable despite all attempts to resurrect it. Preparation is key.

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