10 Steps to Implement Right Now for IT Risk Mitigation

checklist, goals, box

When it comes to risk mitigation regarding your organization’s IT infrastructure, there are many considerations.

Although 100% protection is never possible, it’s important to have a plan in place and use all the security tools at your disposal.

Your organization must weigh the cost of implementing these tools versus the cost of not having them at all.

To simplify this process, we made a 10-step risk mitigation checklist for you:

1. Deploy Device Management

Device Management enables organizations to protect and secure their resources and data from different devices.

Many employees are now working remotely and accessing company files and apps from their own laptops or mobile devices, so you’ll want to secure access to proprietary information.

If your organization is on Microsoft 365, your IT team or administrator can use Microsoft Intune to secure access.

2. Patch Management

Software providers are constantly updating their programs to fix security vulnerabilities. 

You will want to make sure your organization IT’s team or administrator keeps track of updates and when they are released. 

Luckily, many cloud-based programs update on their own these days. Microsoft 365 for instance automatically updates when new security patches are released.

3. Use MFA

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds a layer of protection to the sign-in process.

When accessing accounts or apps, users provide additional identity verification, such as scanning a fingerprint or entering a code received by phone.

If you’re using Microsoft 365, you can use the Windows Authenticator app to make the process even easier.

4. Deploy Single Sign-On (Integration)

Single Sign-On (SSO) will eliminate the time spent re-entering user credentials and improve productivity for your employees.

If your organization uses many different applications, SSO will eliminate the need for your employees to remember multiple passwords and also reduce the chance of passwords getting compromised

5. Do Ongoing Security Hardening

While it’s important to secure your cloud environment with an initial hardening, you’ll want to reharden every month to make sure all the doors and windows are locked so to speak in your environment.

Our initial security hardening for Microsoft 365 includes enabling MFA, setting standard mail filtering and quarantine settings, updating built-in alerts, implementing retention policies, and archiving.

We offer ongoing hardening with TechHouse OfficeLockTM to help ensure and maintain baseline cybersecurity best-practice policy adherence across Microsoft Office accounts and in applications such as Exchange and SharePoint.

6. Use Anti-Phishing Software

Anti-phishing software prevents phishing emails from reaching your employees.

If your organization uses Microsoft 365, anti-phishing policies can be configured in Microsoft Defender (if you have a subscription).

Additionally, we offer TechHouse PhishingNet that will send fake phishing emails to your employees and provide them with awareness training if they click on links.

7. Install Barriers: Firewalls, Antivirus, Anti-malware

Cyber barriers including firewalls, antivirus, and anti-malware software create a buffer between your IT systems and external networks.

Antivirus software protects against a range of threads and will scan your computer for malicious files.

Microsoft 365 includes built-in virus protection in SharePoint Online, OneDrive, and Microsoft Teams that scans files uploaded by useres.

8. Train Your Employees Regularly

Your employees are the backbone of your business and use technology every day to do their jobs.

It’s important to regularly train your employees to recognize cyber threats and remain vigilant.

Knowledge is power.

9. Create a Business Continuity Plan

Even if you have done everything listed above, something wrong could still happen.

You’ll want to write a business continuity plan that outlines the steps your organization must take to ensure business processes continue operating in the event of a major disruption.

Make sure the information in this document is easily accessible and regularly tested and refined to ensure your organization has recovery strategies in place for a range of threats.

10. As Always, Work with a Partner

This checklist should provide a good starting point for creating your organization’s risk mitigation plan. 

If you would like further help with securing your organization and creating a personalized risk mitigation plan, contact us today.