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7 Phases of Incident Response-Cyber Incident

Cyber Incident Response Planning

Organisations are constantly concerned about cybersecurity. They’re aware of the possibility that they will be victims sooner or later. They could be victims of a security incident.

Cyber thieves are constantly on the lookout for sensitive data and personal information in this digital age. It’s only a matter of time before a company is targeted. A robust incident response plan is a prudent thing to have. What is an incident response strategy? And what are the 7 critical phases of a cyber-incident response plan?

This article will explain the 7 steps involved in a cyber-incident response process. It also explains how you can create your own compelling and effective cyber-incident response strategy.

What is an Incident Response Program?

Before we get into the details of the 7 stages of incident response, let’s first go over Incident Response Planning.

Simply put, a Cybersecurity Response Plan is a plan that your company will follow in the event of a security incident. It should be concise, clear, and to-the point. This plan will outline the response procedures for the incident response team (IR) and information security team in the event of a ransomware attack or cyber-attack.

The strategy should list the responsibilities and duties of all members of the executive team and management involved in incident handling.

What should be done about the impacted user accounts? What communication chain should be followed? Who, when, and how should they be notified? Are law enforcement agencies required to be notified? If yes, when?

What are the seven stages in cyber incident response?

An incident response plan, as defined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), has four primary components. Many cybersecurity professionals break this down into 7 steps for incident response. Let’s take a look at these 7 steps.

1. Preparation:

This is the first phase of an incident response plan before any data breach or event occurs. This is the last step that can make or break your response to cybersecurity incidents.

Incident Response Planning’s preparation phase takes into account the possibility that the company will be attacked in the near future and equips the company and key stakeholders to deal with this.

This phase focuses on risk assessment. Ensure that business continuity plans are in place. All of these essential steps are part of incident response. This phase also includes the provision of high-quality cybersecurity training for your staff.

2. Identification:

Recognizing the cybersecurity incident or breach is the main objective of this step. It is crucial to identify the breach within the “Golden Hour” in order to prevent a cybersecurity disaster from spiraling out of control.

The first step is to determine if the incident is a cyber-attack. If yes, what severity. This step is mainly about filtering out false positives.

Next, ask questions about the compromised components of the company. What is the specific damage that this event has caused? This step is part of the incident response.

3. You can control the situation.

The second component of incident response is to control the effects of the attack. It is essential that you have a plan for how to prevent the cyber attack from spiralling out of control. We know that deleting everything is not the best option, as you may lose vital evidence.

In the incident response phase, ensure that you consider both short-term and longer-term strategic factors. This step should include reviewing aspects such as which systems are to be down in the event of a breach, and what backup methods will be in place.

4. Eradication:

In this phase of incident response, you must eliminate the source of the breach. Once you have identified the root cause of the problem and managed the issue, the next step is to eliminate it. It is time to find a way to eliminate it.

This phase focuses on not only removing the virus but also fixing any vulnerabilities and updating obsolete software.

5. Recovery:

After the vulnerabilities are fixed and the malware is eliminated, the next step is recovery or restoration. This stage focuses on getting the systems back up and running again.

6. Lessons Learned:

Reflection is an essential part of any type of incident response planning. This phase of incident response will help you to determine if all stakeholders and decision-makers acted with agility, precision, and other questions.

 This is the time to add them. Check out our Cyber Event Response Strategy Template for more information about how to assess if your plan addresses all key components of an incident response.

Many companies also wish to bring in external cybersecurity experts.

7. To test your muscle memory:

Congratulations, you survived a major security incident. Don’t be too happy. Your hackers won’t give up. They are actually planning to strike again and make it harder.

You should regularly practice and test your incident response plans, and try to find weaknesses or vulnerabilities that fraudsters might exploit.

This step will allow you to test any recent improvements to your incident response strategies.

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