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  • Mom, Where Do Cybersecurity Principles Come From? NIST

If you’re not a technology expert, cybersecurity can feel just as confusing as trying to understand where babies come from when you were a kid. However, cybersecurity doesn’t have to be a pipe dream. The National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework (CSF) can help you take the first step toward understanding what cybersecurity is and how to protect your organization.

So, what exactly is the NIST CSF?

The NIST CSF is a set of guidelines and best practices for improving cybersecurity within organizations. This framework is designed to help organizations better manage and improve their cybersecurity programs. It is not a one-size-fits-all solution, but it can be customized to meet the specific needs of any organization regardless of size or industry.

The 5 Elements of NIST CSF

To get started, let’s understand the five functions of the CSF:

Identify

This function asserts that it’s essential for organizations to recognize their cybersecurity risks before being able to attend to them. To accomplish this, you must be aware of your assets, systems and data. You also must know who your users are and their respective roles.

Additionally, you must understand the business processes required to support the critical missions and business functions.

Protect

To protect your organization’s data and systems, you need to have robust security controls in place. These controls should be designed to detect, prevent and mitigate attacks.

The security controls you implement will differ based on your specific needs, but some effective ones include firewalls, intrusion detection/prevention systems and encryption. You can help protect your organization from cyberattacks by implementing necessary security controls.

Detect

Organizations need to detect cybersecurity events in a short span of time so that they can take action and mitigate the risks. This starts with having full visibility into your networks and systems, as well as the ability to monitor events. You also need to have the tools and processes in place to respond to events quickly and effectively.

Respond

An organization’s response to a cybersecurity incident can be the difference between a minor setback and a complete collapse. A well-executed response plan will help your organization minimize the damage of an incident and get back to business as quickly as possible.

Recover

This element ensures that an organization can recover from a security incident quickly and effectively. This includes having a recovery plan to restore any lost data and get the systems back up and running. It is also critical to have a communications plan in place so that employees know what to do if an incident occurs.

Recovery is an essential component of any security program and is not to be overlooked. You can help ensure your organization is ready in the event of an incident by planning ahead of time.

An IT service provider can help

While the NIST CSF is a robust, comprehensive framework for cybersecurity, your business may not need to implement the entire framework. An IT service provider like us can help you choose the required principles from the CSF to apply to your specific use case.

Our experience and expertise are just what you need to protect your business from ever-growing cyber threats. Contact us today to set up a no-obligation consultation.