Why do you need to refer to a cyber security audit checklist?
A cyber security audit checklist is a valuable tool for when you want to start investigating and evaluating your business’s current position on cyber security. It can be difficult to know where to begin, but Stanfield IT have you covered. This cyber security audit checklist breaks it all down into manageable queries that you can easily answer in relation to your business or workplace. There’s mountains of information out there ― much which is technical mumbo-jumbo. In response to this, we’ve tried to make this cyber security checklist less like techno-babble and more catered to common sense.
When you decide to tackle cyber security, it can be tempting to just pass the issue off to your IT department or a third-party security organisation. You may never really think about gaining an understanding of the whole process, especially when it seems to be a bunch of off-putting techno jargon.
Do you still need to refer to a cyber security audit checklist if you use an external IT team?
An IT security organisation is most definitely a crucial part of the process. However, we also stress that every business needs to have a good understanding of cyber security in general. It’s important to grasp the fundamental essentials of cyber threats, cyber vulnerabilities, and cyber security measures that can be taken. It’s also important to educate your team, as lots of data-breach preventatives come down to simply recognising what an attack looks like. This could be as simple as teaching employees about how to identify a suspicious email or pop up and to never click the follow-through links to these.
We believe that if you have the basic fundamental knowledge of cyber security essentials you’re far more able to recognise any threats or issues as they arise. When you have a good idea of what needs to be done before you pass it off to the specialists, you’re already a step ahead in terms of attacks or system compromises.
Using a specialist is what comes after you evaluate your current cyber security status. We advise you to run through this cyber security audit checklist to give you a basic idea of what’s in place and what you need to do. From there you can start to make plans for implementing a better cyber security framework.
Our top 16 cyber security audit checklist strategies
Our checklist will help you get started understanding the ins and outs of the considerations you need to make regarding your business’s cyber security. We cover this in more depth in our Cyber Security Guide for small to medium businesses. The following list just provides an outline, but it’s the perfect first step to take before taking the plunge into the plethora of cyber security information. It will help you recognise what you need to focus on when doing your own research or when hiring a cyber security support team.
1. Does your organisation have cyber security policies and procedures in place?
2. Does your organisation protect all sensitive information transmissions (such as with encryption or SSL)?
3. Are all devices protected from the internet by a firewall?
4. Does your organisation have designated cyber security personnel and/or a cyber incident response team?
5. Does your organisation have a cyber security user education and awareness program?
6. Does your organisation perform annual cyber security audits?
7. Are all users with access to devices containing or processing sensitive information required to use a unique username and complex password to access these systems?
8. Do all devices with access to sensitive information have access control configured?
9. Do all devices with access to sensitive information get scanned for vulnerabilities on a regular basis?
10. Are these vulnerabilities being addressed in a risk-based priority?
11. Are all laptop and mobile devices encrypted and password protected?
12. Do all mobile devices with access to sensitive information have SCM
with the ability to remotely wipe the device?
13. Does your organisation require two-factor authentication for remote access?
14. Does your organisation have a BCP, and, if so, does it include backup and recovery procedures for all virtual systems?
15. Are all administrative accounts only permitted to perform administrator activities (with no access to internet or external email)?
16. Are all operating systems and applications up to date and do they have a patch management system?
What steps should you take once you’ve gone through the checklist?
There is much to be said for self-evaluation, and we feel that this cyber security audit checklist is an excellent starting point to help you determine where your business sits in terms of cyber readiness. If you’ve run through this cyber security audit checklist and determined you’ve covered it all, then great! But there’s always more work to do. These are just the essentials. From this point on, you need to be vigilant with regular analysis and cyber auditing.
Cyber security can seem tedious, but protecting your business and integrity with something so simple and fundamental is really a no-brainer. Read through the cyber security audit checklist and make sure you’re able to tick everything off. After that, take it to the next level by following the steps in our Cyber Security Guide. Do this and you’ll be on your way to ensure your business is safe and secure from cyber attacks.