By: Ed Brake
The technological world we live in is a convenient yet challenging two-sided coin: the greater access to information it affords us, the more vulnerable and exposed to risk we become.
The concept that cybersecurity is simply a technology issue and the sole responsibility of your IT department is a myth. We cannot rely on anti-virus software and firewalls alone to battle threats. Implementing technology only to solve what are likely human errors and behaviors is impractical. In a recent report from Willis Towers Watson, 90 percent of all cybercrimes stem from relatively minor oversights – like keeping a password written on a notepad or trying to download an electronic birthday card for a friend without verifying the website first.
It is imperative that we educate our workforce and analyze the context in which people are liable to major security breaches. Business leaders must be mindful of the cyber threats facing their industry – both internally and externally – and be responsible for setting the tone and priorities of a security awareness program. The task may seem daunting considering the rapid rate that technology is advancing, but it is imperative and the world knows it: according to the research firm Gartner, businesses worldwide will spend close to $96 billion on cybersecurity solutions in 2018. A comprehensive IT department with ears to the ground on the latest cyber threats is crucial.
We as business leaders must empower our employees with the tools and resources to identify and report the red flags of cyber risk. Communication and revisions to best practices are key to building and maintaining a culture of cybersecurity. Training and education programs must be ongoing and responsive to the evolution of cyber threats.
Ellin & Tucker has invested in software that educates our professionals on the tell-tale signs of phishing emails, corruptlinks and computer viruses. People must be the first line of defense in protecting the company network and information systems. They are a key component of the solution.
ED BRAKE, CPA, began as an administrator in 1982, making the firm one of the only accounting firms in the U.S. to hire a non-billable manager to oversee day-to-day operations. He quickly identified ways to increase Ellin & Tucker’s efficiency, and was promoted to CEO and Managing Director in 1990. His strategic vision for defined success and a collaborative work culture has led the firm to more than double its business portfolio, increase staffing, and position the company as Baltimore’s 5th largest audit, accounting, tax and business consulting firm. Ed’s expertise includes practice management, cost containment and a leadership role in the career development process of young professionals