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Jul 10, 2023
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BOUNCING BACK: HOW RESILIENT IS YOUR CYBER ECOSYSTEM?

Written by

Dr.Vivekananth Padmanabhan|HOD-IT|Senior Lecturer IT&Business|Cyber Security Trainer

What if I told you that your cyber ecosystem could be as resilient as a rubber ball?

Yes, you read that right!

Just like a rubber ball that bounces back after hitting the ground, your cyber ecosystem can recover from cyber threats and attacks.

But how?

And is your cyber ecosystem resilient enough?

Let’s explore these intriguing questions together.

Why does cyber resilience matter?

Imagine you’re walking on a tightrope. A strong gust of wind blows, and you lose your balance.

Would you prefer to have a safety net below or not?

The answer is obvious: the safety net provides a layer of protection, just in case.

Similarly, in the digital world, cyber resilience is like that safety net. It’s the ability of an organization’s cyber ecosystem to anticipate, withstand, recover from, and adapt to ever-changing cyber threats and attacks. In today’s interconnected world, where cyber threats are constantly evolving, cyber resilience is more important than ever.

What Makes a Cyber Ecosystem Resilient?

A resilient cyber ecosystem is built on five core principles:

1.Proactive Defense: 

Instead of waiting for cyber threats to strike, a resilient ecosystem takes a proactive approach to identifying and addressing potential vulnerabilities. This includes regular security assessments, penetration testing, and threat hunting.

2.Rapid Response: 

When a cyber incident occurs, a resilient ecosystem is able to react quickly and efficiently. This involves having an incident response plan in place and a well-trained team that can execute the plan.

3.Recovery: 

After a cyberattack, a resilient cyber ecosystem can bounce back and restore normal operations with minimal disruption. This includes having robust backup and recovery solutions in place as well as regularly testing them to ensure they work as expected.

4.Adaptation: 

A resilient cyber ecosystem learns from past incidents and adapts accordingly. This requires continuous improvement of security measures and processes, as well as staying informed about the latest cyber threats and trends.

5.Collaboration: 

Cyber resilience cannot be achieved in isolation. A resilient cyber ecosystem involves cooperation and information sharing among various stakeholders, including employees, partners, vendors, and even other organizations.

Can I give you an interesting example of cyber resilience in action?

Certainly!

Let’s take a look at the famous case of the 2017 NotPetya ransomware attack. This malware spread rapidly across the globe, causing billions of dollars in damage to various organizations. Among the affected companies was Danish shipping giant Maersk.

Despite the devastating impact of the attack, Maersk managed to bounce back remarkably quickly. Within ten days, the company had restored 80% of its operations, and within two weeks, it was back to normal.

How did they achieve this remarkable level of cyber resilience?

Maersk had a robust incident response plan in place, which they executed effectively.

They also benefited from a stroke of luck: a single domain controller in Ghana was offline for maintenance during the attack, which allowed Maersk to recover their entire Active Directory. This crucial piece of infrastructure enabled them to restore their systems much more quickly than would have been possible otherwise.

The Maersk example demonstrates the importance of having a resilient cyber ecosystem. A combination of proactive defense, rapid response, recovery, adaptation, and collaboration played a crucial role in their ability to bounce back from the NotPetya attack.

So, how resilient is your cyber ecosystem?

Now that you’ve learned the importance of cyber resilience and what it takes to build a resilient cyber ecosystem, it’s time to assess your own organization’s resilience.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you have a proactive cyberdefense strategy in place?
  • Is your incident response plan up-to-date, and is your team trained to execute it?
  • Have you tested your backup and recovery solutions recently?
  • Are you continuously adapting your security measures and processes based on lessons learned from past incidents?
  • Are you collaborating with stakeholders and sharing information about cyber threats?

If your answer to any of these questions is “no” or “I’m not sure,” it’s time to take action.

Remember, a resilient cyber ecosystem is not a luxury; it’s a necessity in today’s digital world.

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