Every business faces digital risks as part of its ongoing operations. Not taking proactive measures in managing it might cause serious problems, such as data theft, reputation damage and even large financial loss. In this article we will dive into digital risk – What is it? What threats are included in it, and how can they be minimised to safeguard your business?
What is Digital Risk?
Digital risk is the term used to accumulate the risks faced by businesses who have a digital presence. It effects all businesses, large or small, that have any sort of online activity, which nowadays is pretty much every business.
The sort of threats included under ‘digital risk’ are numerous and constantly evolving. Some examples are: hackers who are looking to exploit weaknesses to infiltrate organisations (using malware or other ways), cyber criminals looking to defraud businesses out of funds, and even governments looking to steal intellect property from other countries to have leverage for potential conflicts.
The time when digital risk protection was only the IT, or cyber defence teams’ responsibility has long passed. It is a business issue as much as it is a technological issue, therefore C-Level executives and the board need to get involved in reviewing it and making sure the business has an adequate plan in place. Because of the vast array of potential threats, and the fact that every one of us, especially in the business world, is using some type of technology, there is really no company immune to the need to manage their digital risk and defend itself using digital risk protection.
How to minimise Digital Risk
Managing the digital risk of a business is not a simple thing. It is quite involved, and your actions are vital in maintaining good digital risk management. Every business should aspire to conduct regular internal audits to identify defence gaps, understand all the threats and decide which ones are the most relevant by assessing your business-critical assets (employees, systems, applications, etc). This is the basis for any good digital risk management plan, since you know your business the best and can steer protection to the most vulnerable areas. The ultimate goal is to reduce the attack surface as much as possible.
Remember, there is no such thing as 100% defence, but attackers are always thinking about their return on investment. If they get the impression that your company is well-protected, they will probably move on and look for another target, that will be easier to infiltrate.
Digital Risk Monitoring
But how do you know where your business stands in terms of digital risks? The answer is digital risk monitoring. To truly cover every threat, you need to have advanced monitoring tools and the capabilities to respond to events in real time. These include, for example, scanning the internet content targeting your business, and a well-trained team (internal or outsourced) to act on the findings. This will increase the chances that, even in the case of an incident targeting your business, you will identify it and be able to react accordingly.
What can go wrong if you choose not to implement any type of digital risk protection? In short, everything! Not knowing what your business stature is, in terms of protection, keeps you completely in the dark as to where your blind spots are, who is targeting you, whether you are ready to face an incident, and much, much more.
FraudWatch International security analysts actively monitor the internet for the purpose of gathering intelligence, understanding patterns of behaviour and identifying current and future attack trends. We use all of this information to support our primary objective of protecting client brands and we also share it with the broader community through articles like this.