Which Incident Response Service is Right For You?

Contrary to popular belief, cybersecurity is not an IT challenge to overcome, but rather a business risk to manage. Most organisations implement proactive measures such as security platforms and vulnerability assessments which is encouraging; however, a critical element of risk management and business resiliency is investing in the ability to respond to cyber attacks that evade your defences.

While incident response is vital, handling incidents efficiently and effectively is a complex process that requires adequate planning and resources. By choosing the right incident response provider, you are much better placed to detect incidents quickly, minimise business damage and build resilience to future attacks. 

How Incident Response Improves Business Resiliency

If you’re unsure where to start with incident response, the NIST Incident Response Guide is a great resource. The publication can assist you in analysing incident-related data, determining appropriate responses and, ultimately, handling incidents efficiently and effectively. The guidelines are relevant to every business hoping to improve its cyber resilience. 

When it comes to cybersecurity, it’s good practice to align with incident response standards and frameworks, such as NIST, to build the right procedures and processes for a successful incident response capability. At InfoTrust, we recommend following four key principles to achieve cyber resiliency:

  1. Prevention: taking actions to reduce or eliminate the likelihood or impact of an incident is often less costly and more effective than responding afterwards. By employing standard risk management practices and ensuring systems, networks and applications are sufficiently secure, you can reduce the volume of incidents that occur and ensure you have the resources and capacity to respond to and recover from those that do.  
  2. Preparedness: while every incident is different, businesses should be prepared, especially in relation to incidents that use common attack vectors. Business continuity planning is a vital part of response planning that aims to minimise operational disruption. By conducting a Business Impact Analysis (BIA), you can characterise system requirements and process interdependencies to determine and prioritise your response to any given incident and ensure effective recovery. 
  3. Response: preparing appropriate response plans is vital to minimise the potential impact of a cyberattack. Initial detection, ability to respond swiftly, and continuous monitoring capabilities are all fundamental. Once an incident has been detected, processes need to be in place to contain and control the impact. 
  4. Recovery: Your business should be defining steps to minimise disruption and restore any capabilities or services that were impacted during a cybersecurity incident by developing a Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP). Recovery supports the return to normal operations and may involve actions such as restoring systems from backups, rebuilding systems, replacing compromised files, installing patches, and changing passwords. 

Effective incident response creates control, stability, and structure amidst chaos. By following these principles, you can build a comprehensive approach to risk management and anticipate possible direct impacts to your business, suppliers, customers and other key external parties.

Choosing an Incident Response Provider

When disaster strikes, you need to have an incident response provider that can help you respond with speed and efficacy. Consider the average time the incident response provider takes to:

  • Arrive and deploy technologies 
  • Identify a cybercriminal
  • Discover the root cause of an attack
  • Deliver a satisfactory resolution. 

It’s also important to keep in mind the following requirements for incident response tooling and their functional categories when selecting a provider:

  • Response capacity - is the provider able to scale to the size of your business, deliver remote investigations, enable live analysis, and allow unlimited concurrent investigators to participate?
  • Investigation tools - can the provider perform comprehensive memory analysis, offer detect toolkits, determine the nature of all processes, and mount remote nodes as local physical disks?
  • Forensic qualities - will the provider extract and preserve forensic evidence to meet the necessary legal standards? Do they include comprehensive logging of examiner actions, remote node network traffic, and remote node process activity?

Asking these questions before engaging an incident response provider can help with selecting a service that’s right for your organisation. Having immediate access to cyber forensics and incident response services that can deliver rapid control and stability will determine how your business responds in the most difficult of circumstances. 

What Makes a Good Incident Response Provider?

When disaster strikes, it makes all the difference if you have an incident response partner that can respond quickly and efficiently. Having the right response partner on board can make the difference between catastrophe and just another day in the office. Some of the key elements that make a good incident response provider include:

  • Global expertise - ensure your incident response team is highly accredited and has diverse experience in incident response.
  • Digital forensics - with industry-leading digital forensics and investigative tools on your side, you’ll know every impact on your system, be able to start containment immediately, quickly understand how the data breach occurred and get your business back up to speed in no time. 
  • Service level agreements (SLAs) - you need to know that your provider can get you back to normal business operations in a matter of hours. Look for an SLA that promises a fast response, at all times. 
  • On-demand support - ensure you can contact your incident response team day or night. They should always be available when you need them and able to support you through the entire investigative lifecycle. Cybercriminals do not work 9 – 5, so don’t expect a cyber incident to occur during business hours.
  • Emergency response - rapid mobilisation and deployment are vital to quickly secure your system and networks.
  • Legal support - look for support through the entire incident lifecycle, including the process of filing insurance claims and preparing compliance and litigation evidence. 
  • Advisory services - additional services such as data discovery and classification, data loss prevention, insider threat programs and risk-based security management can help strengthen security gaps and bolster your cyber resilience. 

How Quickly Can Your Business Respond to a Security Incident? 

Cyberattacks have become more numerous, diverse and, ultimately, damaging. While preventative activities may lower the number of incidents, not all incidents can be prevented. How fast your business can contain and recover from a security incident greatly reduces business disruption, costs, and reputational damage. 

If you would like to learn more about how incident response can help your business, contact the cybersecurity experts at InfoTrust today for an incident response consultation.

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