What is Continuous Monitoring and Why Does it Matter?

August 4, 2023

Introduction

Cybercrime doesn’t sleep, so neither can your security defenses.

Have you heard of continuous monitoring before? It’s like having a vigilant, digital security guard that helps to safeguard your digital assets and keep the bad guys at bay. It’s an essential practice in today’s cyber threat landscape, where staying alert and proactive is key to maintaining a secure digital environment!

Why Continuous Monitoring Matters

Human error is responsible for 95% of cyber-attacks. That’s how we know that we’re a fallible species.

It’s also why more and more security experts are turning to automated software to supplement their own vigilance. Where you might not recognize suspicious behavior for what it is, machine intelligence can spot when files aren’t where they’re supposed to be or certain users log on at irregular hours. Then they can instantly raise a red flag to the appropriate security expert!

When it comes to threat detection, it’s crucial to act as swiftly as possible. Now, that doesn’t mean compromising safety for speed; rather, learn your incident response plan back to front so that you know exactly what to do in an emergency. When the time comes, you can proceed efficiently without panicking.

What Technology Does That Entail?

Imagine someone trying to break into your house. Ideally, you would have security cameras installed all around your property, motion sensors at the doors and windows, and an alarm system that alerts you instantly if something suspicious is detected. This allows you to take immediate action, call the authorities, and prevent any potential harm or loss.

Similarly, in the digital realm, continuous monitoring involves using various tools and technologies to keep an eye on your networks, servers, applications and data. Appropriate soft- and hardware could monitor your logs, network traffic, user activities and system behavior to identify any signs of unauthorized access, malware infections, data breaches or other cyber threats. They can notify the IT provider and user whose system is compromised, lock down the network to prevent the threat actor from delving further inside, and even start response procedures automatically!

By continuously monitoring your digital environment, you can catch potential security incidents early on, before they escalate into major breaches or damage. It gives you the opportunity to respond swiftly, contain the threat, and minimize the impact on your systems and sensitive data.

Conclusion

While automated continuous monitoring is important, each employee must also do our part to protect the private data stored in our organization’s databases. Assess the firm’s security posture, update incident response plans, and conduct periodic training and awareness programs to best make sure each person and machine are working together to provide the most robust security posture possible.

According to a study conducted by the Ponemon Institute in 2020, organizations that implemented continuous monitoring practices experienced a 51% reduction in the mean time to identify and contain a cyberattack compared to those without such practices. This emphasizes the importance of implementing continuous monitoring as a proactive security measure to enhance cybersecurity defenses.

Continuous monitoring is a group effort! Together, you, your coworkers and the technology that you rely on can keep a close on your systems for suspicious — or malicious! — behavior.

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