What Should You or Your Company Do After a Data Breach?
Having personal identity information or company data stolen is at the very least a severe inconvenience. At its worst, it can be a significant disruption to our lives and finances and put companies out of business. The ongoing threat of cyberattacks has required all businesses to become hypervigilant in their protection against cyberattacks. But as hackers acquire new skills and tools to get around our system defenses, data breaches can still happen. How we respond to a breach is key to successfully rebounding from a cyberattack.
What Should a Company Do After a Data Breach?
- Confirm a Breach Has Occurred – Just because you’ve received a notification that you’ve been hacked doesn’t mean that it’s so. One of the scams hackers employ is pretending to be a company that has had its data breached and warning you that you are a victim of the attack. Once gaining your trust, they will manipulate you to surrender private data such as passwords and security question responses. You must review your accounts directly and contact your credit bureaus before assuming a warning notification is legitimate.
- Ascertain the Type of Breach and What’s Been Stolen
- If a credit or debit card account has been stolen, canceling the card will generally stop the damage caused by a hack. Then, by initiating a fraud investigation, your bank or credit institution will seek the source of the attack. In response to your report, many will refund the loss depending on the outcome of the investigation. After canceling a debit or credit card, you may request a new one with a different number.
- Breaches of company financial data and trade secrets can lead to bankruptcy for small or midsized businesses. Financial losses include both short-term and long-term losses such as regulatory fines, legal and notification fees and consumer lawsuits. Don’t wait for a breach. Consult a cyber security professional for a Cyber Risk Analysis and take the necessary steps to protect your hard-earned company data.
- Check All Your Accounts – Do not make assumptions about what “should be safe.” Contact your banks, your credit bureaus and carefully review all of your financial accounts for transactions that you don’t recognize or don’t look right. If you’ve received any recent notices of late payments, overdrafts or IRS notifications that seem incorrect, they could be further clues related to your hack.
- Accept Support From the Source of the Breach – Once you’ve confirmed that an organization notifying you of a cyberattack is legitimate, if they offer services to correct or mitigate the damage caused, accept their help. They are likely to have more robust resources for dealing with data breaches and will be very willing to work with you to resolve the security threats as quickly as possible.
- Change and Strengthen Your Passwords and Use Multi-Step Authentications – Password management and strong multi-factor authentication is essential at all times. However, after a data breach, the creation of all new credentials is imperative. You must assume that the hack has compromised everything and protect your accounts with new credentials.
- Contact Credit Bureaus and Lenders – Credit bureaus can initiate fraud alerts that will be added to your account so that they can watch for suspicious activity. They can also notify you and guard against a hacker opening new accounts or taking out new loans in your name.
What to Do If Your Personal Information Has Been Compromised
- If Your Social Security Number Has Been Stolen, your personal identity data and financial information are at very high risk. A hacker, armed with your social security number, can attack your finances and reputation and disrupt your life for years to come. Theft of a social security number is the first step to stealing your identity. In addition to taking the above steps, here is what to do if you think your identity has been stolen:
- Place a security freeze on your credit reports or locking them.
- Request a new social security card from the Social Security Administration.
- File a police report or Identity Theft Report with the FTC https://identitytheft.gov/.
- Carefully check all your credit reports in detail
- Report the theft to the IRS to help guard against being a victim of tax fraud.
DIGIGUARD Cyber Security Knows How to Protect Your Business Data and Personal Information
If you’ve already been the victim of a data breach, you know you have to take immediate steps to ensure it never happens again. If you have not yet fallen victim to a cybercrime, you should act now. You may already be using some of these protective measures. But as your business grows and adds more devices such as smart controls, wireless access and remote access, your network surface attack area for hackers grows too. DIGIGUARD, specializes in preventing cyberattacks and has a wide array of solutions for small and mid-sized businesses. It works with companies to establish cyber security best practices to ensure their confidential data has the best protection possible. Many companies, bound by strict compliance and privacy laws, such as law firms, medical practices and financial services, cannot afford data breaches and must apply additional data protection measures. For any business, cyberattacks can have devastating consequences. DIGIGUARD can assess your cyber risks and work with you to ensure you have the best protection solution for your business.
Contact DIGIGUARD CYBER SECURITY at 833-33-CYBER (833-332-9237) www.DIGIGUARDsecurity.com to start locking down your cyber security for better data protection in 2021.