According to information from IBM, a cyber attack can cost a business an average of $3.6 million. Should your business be targeted in one, your operations could be disrupted and you’ll likely have a hard time gaining back your customers’ trust, especially if their information was leaked out in the breach.

While preventing cyber attacks is important, security experts also recommend that your business put in place an action plan that outlines what to do should an attack happen. This is because no security strategy or system can be completely foolproof.

Why It’s Critical to Have an Action Plan

Having a cyber security action plan will help your business protect its assets, reputation and customers. Advantages of having a plan include:

  • Less Confusion – When you have a plan that is clearly laid out and updated as needed, all essential personnel will be award of what they need to do and how they should act during an emergency.
  • Damage Mitigation – If you know exactly how you should react in the event of a security breach, you’ll waste less time and be able to get problems solved a lot faster. This will allow you to get back on your feet faster, thus limiting the damages caused by the attack.
  • Protecting Those Who Do Business With You – When you customers and business partners know that your company has a plan on how to react to a cyber attack, there’s a chance that they’ll feel more confident doing business with you.

Creating the Right Action Plan

Putting together a cyber security action plan doesn’t have to be difficult. You just need to consider some critical elements, such as:

  • Clearly Defining the Role of Each Individual

Every employee should know what they should be doing in case a rapid incident response is needed. This allows them to get to work immediately, which is critical to limiting the amount of damage that the attack can cause to your IT infrastructure.

  • Having the Ability to Quickly Contact Trusted Partners

Depending on the type and size of your business, you may be using the services of an external IT firm that helps you manage the security of some or all of your business IT systems. You should ensure that you’re able to get in touch with them when it counts the most and remember that cyber attacks don’t happen only during business hours.

  • Putting Together a Customer Notification Strategy

If a security breach occurs, there’s a chance that customer information will be compromised. For this reason, your action plan should define how you’re going to reach out to the affected customers and provide them with a solution. While a serious security breach can have a negative impact on the reputation of your business and its image among customers, quickly communicating with those affected can mitigate this damage and help restore trust in your company a lot faster.