What is Cyber Incident Response? The term "Incident," describes an issue, a conflict, or an actual incident, which describes a data breach or a cyberattack. And the term "Incident Response," as it is almost clear already, refers to the process of handling such incidents, including the steps taken by organizations in an attempt to manage their consequences.
Organizations in the information security, cyber security, and business fields have lots of data to protect due to the fear of an easy data breach in this modern era. The privacy of data is the key that is to be protected and secured. And since performing an effective incident response is a very complex task, incident response planning is necessary.
Many organizations use NIST’s Computer Security Incident Handling Guide as a base reference for their system security’s incident response planning. For any organization to plan for an incident response, they must first understand the information security risks that must be focused on and rectified. And by understanding such possibilities, identifying new attacks and advanced risks becomes easy and can be prevented in earlier stages.
NIST suggests, "Proactively sharing such information among organizations regarding these signs of attacks is the most effective way to identify any of these potential risks of attacks."
For creating a detailed response plan for cyber incidents, there are a few phases that you have to look after. In the following content, you will learn what makes your response plan an effective one. Just as the complexity increases for big business types, some of these steps might not suit your business type.
These are the basic steps that will help you gain a basic idea after practicing, which in turn helps in developing an incident plan format suitable for your business. Now let’s look at each step and understand them.
Data breaches can happen at any instance of a project or at any instance of data storage at any business. To plan for such incident responses, it is important to first be prepared in advance by analyzing such occurrences. By preparing for such instances, organizations can determine the response to an incident from their Emergency Response Team.
Responding to an incident also involves concepts like organization policy, documentation, a response plan, training, access to tools, and a few other such ones. Together with training, you should perform a regular audit to ensure the sensitivity of the data and to take adequate steps to respond to an incident.
This phase of incident response planning deals with detecting incidents so that responding instantly reduces the amount of damage. Employees from the emergency response team and the IT security team collect information about event occurrences by analyzing data logs, detecting data errors, and using monitoring tools to detect and determine incident occurrences and scoops.
This gathered information will be utilized as the process progresses. This information is then rectified and filtered to identify a potentially risky incident. Based on the type of incident, certain precautions and measures will be taken.
When an incident has taken place, it is very important to limit the information and contain the identification. The main objective of this third phase is to limit the information about the identified incident and prevent it from posing any further potential damage.
This phase is all about taking the necessary precautions by determining the type of incident that has occurred. Depending on the type of incident that occurred, remove the malicious hacker from your systems or isolate the data that has already been compromised.
This stage of performing a successful incident response involves eliminating the danger and restoring the impacted systems to their original condition, ideally with the least amount of data loss possible.
The details will depend once again on the sort of occurrence, but at this point you need to figure out how the information was compromised and how to eliminate the danger.
For instance, you would get rid of the malicious software and separate the areas of your organization that were compromised if you were infected with malware. You would have to freeze their account if the attack happened as a result of a malicious hacker gaining access to an employee's login information.
The major activities involved are making sure that the right procedures have been followed up to this point, including measures that not only eliminate the malicious content but also guarantee that the afflicted systems are entirely clean.
The key activities connected with this stage of incident response are testing, monitoring, and validating systems as they are put back into production to ensure that they are not re-infected or compromised. The choice of the time and date for operations to resume, the testing and verification of the compromised systems, keeping an eye out for unusual behaviors, and the use of tools for testing, monitoring, and validating system behavior are all part of this phase.
After you've eliminated the threat, you can proceed to the penultimate step of responding to a cyber-incident, which is to put your systems back online.
Depending on the situation, this could be simpler or more complicated, but it's still a crucial step that needs to be taken seriously. You can continue to be vulnerable to such attacks without a sufficient recovery procedure, which would increase the harm.
Once the issue has been resolved, you should test and keep an eye on the affected systems as part of the recovery process. By doing this, you can make sure the measures you implement are effective and have a chance to make any necessary corrections.
The phase of incident response known as lessons learned is crucial because it aids in educating and enhancing future incident response efforts. Organizations can update their incident response plans at this stage with details that may have been overlooked during the incident as well as thorough documentation that will serve as information for potential future occurrences. Clear summaries of the entire incident are provided in lessons-learned reports, which can be used in recap meetings, as training materials for fresh CIRT recruits, or as a standard against which to measure other incidents.
Every stage of the procedure should be evaluated. You should talk about what occurred, why it occurred, what you did to control the situation, and what could have been done differently. One to two weeks should pass between the security incident and the time of this discussion, allowing ample time for everyone to reflect on the event after the fact while still keeping it fresh in their minds.
This stage's goal is to prevent inefficiencies from happening in the future rather than to criticize team members for past errors. If the process failed, it could be because the documentation was unclear, the right steps weren't specified, or the workforce wasn't properly trained.
Due to the concern over a simple data breach in this day and age, businesses and organizations involved in information security, cyber security, and other related industries have a lot of data to secure. The most important thing to safeguard and maintain is the privacy of data.
Reviewing the incident and looking for chances for improvement is the last stage of the cyber incident response strategy. A meeting should be held with the entire incident response team to discuss the elements of the plan that succeeded and any issues you ran into.
To learn and practice such other cybersecurity concepts and its security objectives, enroll now to Sprintzeal’s CISM Certification Training and get certified as Certified Information Security Manager.
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