Databases are the core of a business, especially an online business. They track your orders, customers, inventory, and more. Despite these databases being vital, some companies still don’t take the necessary steps to protect them properly.
Cybersecurity is the act of protecting something digital from cyber attacks. Cyber attacks are nothing new and are quite common in this age of ever-increasing technology. Some attacks target money while others go after information. No matter the method, cyber attacks can ruin businesses and lives. The best we can do is be prepared for attacks.
Most organizations lack the ability to respond to breaches in a timely manner and don’t assess database activity continuously. Common database security issues are compromised credentials, the potential for a major data breach, and the inability to recognize breaches until it is too late.
At a basic level, it is estimated that most organizations lack an elevated degree of certainty about who is accessing their database. That is a major security issue. Not knowing who is in your databases can lead to serious problems such as deleted data, incorrect data, or a major data breach. Areas to focus on to prevent or respond to attacks include storage, security, and what to do after an attack.
It is not enough to capture data, it needs to be stored in a way that is conducive to security. The solution is not to overload the system with protection tools. The more programs you add to the system, the more data is created and the system can become over overrun with notifications or false positives. Proper analytics will allow an organization to find true threats and reactions which will increase incident response rates.
The issue is that getting to the data can be complicated. Some data could be structured, some naming conventions could be different, and it is all pouring in from internal and external sources. The key to fixing this issue is giving your security expert access to every single bit of data you have, including historical data. If you are the security expert, a simple test to run is an audit. Look at who has accessed your database. Also, look at what each person did and when they accessed the data.This is a simple way to manage your database.
Once you have your database in order, automation can help you maintain that order. Database automation takes care of tasks that the database administrator sets, saving time and money. This can include:
● Script review
● Individual specialized initiatives
Not only is database management important in general, but it also helps with security. Having data that is easy to navigate makes patrolling the system much easier. The more straight forward the database, the easier it is to secure.
There are a few questions security experts ask when preparing to adapt a database for database security. According to Ntirety, these are the questions professionals ask:
● Is the data formatted in a way that will allow for efficient retrieval and analysis?
● Can large volumes of data be quickly queried for drill down to data sources?
● Can multiple data sources be integrated and analyzed together for security purposes?
● What and how much data will need to be stored for security analysis purposes – and for how long?
● Is the environment flexible enough to support the kind of investigation and analysis functions the security team needs?
● Is there cross-functional cooperation between departments to support analysis of data such as network traffic flow?
After an Attack
Even if you have the most up-to-date system, a breach can still occur. Depending on the severity of the breach and the type of attack, your response will have to be different.
The first step, no matter what, is to contain the breach. Make sure it doesn’t spread or worsen. Here is a list of basic steps, according to AmTrust, to take once you have discovered a data breach:
● Disconnect your internet
● Disable remote access
● Maintain your firewall settings
● Install any pending security updates or patches
● Change passwords
Once those steps have been taken, you can now try to solve the issue. Identify what data was compromised, how the breacher gained access, and what connections were active when the breach occurred. Educate your staff on breach protocol and review security measures to make sure there isn't a gap. Be diligent and thorough. Depending on the situation, you may need to talk with a legal team.
Now it is time for the daunting task of notifying customers. The best practice is to be honest. Tell them what you can and what you are doing to fix the situation. Set up a hotline or an email where customers can contact you about the breach.
Database security is paramount to any company. Protecting customer information, inventory numbers, and more should be a top priority. By organizing your data, security becomes easier to put in place. Security experts should be given the access they need to protect the system. All these elements need to come together to create a secure database.