Step 1 of the NIST Cybersecurity Framework is identify. Learn the importance of identifying the data, technology, and services that are valuable to your business.
- Let's get started on the five step plan. Step one of the NIST Cybersecurity Framework is identify. Identify your business's key assets. If you don't know what you have, how can you protect it? We need to figure out what data and technology your company has that's valuable to others. I've already shown you what the black market looks like. So, remember, your business assets are not just valuable to you. Ask yourself this. What data and technology does your company have that, if you didn't have access to it, you wouldn't be able to open your doors for business? Think about the dentist office without access to patient data or the financial planner without access to client investment data.
That data was all on paper just a few years ago, but now it's mostly digital. The first step each business should take is to create an inventory list. Your inventory list will be a living document that includes hardware, software, and data. There's plenty of templates online, so I won't prescribe one for you here. Find the inventory list that works best for your business. Put the words technology inventory sheet into Google and then narrow your search by industry if you don't find something that works for you.
Your inventory sheet should be updated regularly to ensure you're keeping track of new devices, data, and accounts. When you find a template you like, bring all the staff together for a discussion to fill it out. And then give someone in your organization the responsibility of owning the inventory sheet with a monthly review put on the calendar. Identifying key assets is the first step in improving the cybersecurity of your business.
- Physical security vs. cybersecurity
- Identifying what you have that's valuable to others
- Protecting valuable data and accounts
- Detecting a breach
- Responding to an incident in an efficient manner
- Recovering from a breach
- Technology checklists for small and medium businesses