When we think of cyber security resilience, we generally think of technical safeguards, but protecting an organisation involves more than technical defences. Although these components are important, your toolkit also requires administrative and leadership strategies. Among these, Disaster Recovery Plans (DRP) and Incident Response Plans (IRP), are part of a greater Business Continuity Plan (BCP) which is essential for ensuring your organisation's resilience in the face of a disruption. In a perfect world, security awareness training and technical defences work in tandem with BCPs.

A foundation for resilience

A Business Continuity Plan is a set of strategic procedures that are all about getting an organisation ready to handle and bounce back from cyber threats. This plan is dynamic and leadership-driven, evolving alongside the business and the constantly shifting cyber threat landscape. This means knowing what parts of the business are most important and what dangers they might face. The plan should be consistently evaluated for relevance, to ensure its swift execution after a cyber incident. If you aren’t sure how to get started, the ACSC (Australian Cyber Security Centre) now provides a tool and framework to help small and medium businesses with their BCPs.

Working with technical defences and security awareness

Technical defences seem like the frontline barriers against malicious, however, no defence system is completely foolproof. Cyber criminals persistently find new ways to breach systems, using social engineering and phishing to start with the human element underscoring the need for not only phishing awareness training, but a resilient recovery strategy as provided by a business continuity plan.

Knowledgeable employees act as an organisation's human firewall, significantly lowering the chances of successful phishing attacks, security awareness training is the first step in creating organisational resilience.

When breaches occur, it is the meticulously incident planned response and recovery procedures in a BCP that help minimise the impact of a potential cyber disaster.

Integrated strength

The integration of a BCP with technical defences and security awareness training forms a triad of cyber security robustness. This holistic strategy ensures not just prevention, but also efficient response and recovery capabilities. Let’s have a look at the basic steps of a BCP as part of your incident response.

  1. Risk Assessment. For expert planning, you need to know what you have to lose. Cataloguing your assets and the risks and threats to their safety are step one. This includes your processes, human resources, suppliers/vendors, technology, intellectual property, data, and physical assets like computers and servers.
  1. Roles and responsibilities. Who will lead the plan? Who should employees look to when the plan is executed? Formalise the chain of command.
  1. Communication protocols. Communicating to stakeholders, press, regulatory bodies, customers and employees wilk make or break your incident response, and in turn inform your business resilience. Ensure you communicate in a clear and truthful manner.
  1. Disaster recovery. Does your disaster recovery plan include how to resume work immediately? Who will recover the data, who will set up the new site and repair reputation?
  1. Test test test and train. Ongoing security awareness training for staff is paramount – this includes phishing awareness and how the employee is integrated into the BCP (Business Continuity Plan) as well as revising the plan periodically.

The collaboration between security awareness and BCPs highlights the importance of every employee's role in both preventing incidents and executing the recovery plan. This shared responsibility cultivates a stronger security culture, enhancing the organisation's comprehensive cyber defence framework.

Business Continuity Plans are different for each organisation but are indispensable elements of an inclusive cyber toolkit. Alongside technical defences and security awareness training, BCPs lay the groundwork for a resilient approach to cyber threats.  For a demo of our award-winning training and advice on how to incorporate phishing awareness training into your BCP, contact us now.