Microsoft’s security guide for companies: Follow these 5 simple steps – Times of India

Basic security hygiene can help organisations protect themselves against as many as 98% of cyberattacks, so says Microsoft’s latest Digital Defense Report. Advising organisations to focus on security the report says that security is no longer just about keeping safe, it has also become a key enabler of technological success for any organisation. The report adds that innovation and enhanced productivity can only be achieved by introducing security measures that make organisations as resilient as possible against modern attacks. Many cyberattacks are successful simply not because hackers used some sophisticated or hard to detect techniques, but because the organisation did not follow basic security hygiene. To help companies better defend themselves, Microsoft recommends what is says are 5 minimum security standards:
Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA): To protect against compromised user passwords and helps to provide extra resilience for identities. 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.
Apply Zero Trust principles: The cornerstone of any resilience plan limiting the impact on an organisation. These principles are: Explicitly verify and ensure that users and devices are in a good state before allowing access to resources. Use least privilege access. This means that only allows the privilege that is needed for access to a resource and no more. Assume breach, this means be always prepared for system defences to be breached and systems might be compromised. This means constantly monitoring the environment for possible attacks.

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Use extended detection and response anti-malware: Implement software to detect and automatically block attacks and provide insights to the security operations. Monitoring insights from threat detection systems is essential to being able to respond to threats in a timely fashion.
Keep your systems up to date: Unpatched and out of date systems are a key reason many organisations fall victim to an attack. Ensure all systems are kept up to date including firmware, the operating system, and applications.
Protect data: Knowing your important data, where it is located and whether the right systems are implemented is crucial to implementing the appropriate protection.

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