Tech Time: Make the most of cybersecurity

Focus your CU’s resources on the most cost- and time-efficient areas.

by. Jim Benlein

Up. Down. You know it.

Up. Down … OK, you know it all.

It may not top the charts for its lyrical strength, but as a quirky way to look at important aspects of your credit union’s cybersecurity program, this little verse is a three-hit wonder.

With limited resources, CUs want to focus their cybersecurity efforts on areas where they get the most bang for their buck. Figuring out which areas deserve the most attention can be tricky, but the mantra at the top of this article can provide some insight.

Up. Keep software up-to-date. Make sure to patch your desktop and server operating system software whenever necessary, and don’t forget to apply the appropriate updates to all of your applications (Microsoft Office, browsers, Adobe Flash, PDF viewers, Java, etc.). Don’t assume patches are being applied! Verify, then trust, then verify again.

Take a risk-based approach when it comes to testing updates before installation. For example, if updates are low risk and there’s little chance of them interfering with critical credit union tasks, they can be applied with minimal testing. If you expect updates to be medium or high risk, test to verify they don’t pose problems with important operational tasks or other software. Additionally, use a centralized, server-based system to automate deployment and reporting on installed (or neglected) updates, if possible.

continue reading »