If you run a manufacturing unit, one of the most important things is cyber hygiene. As a person engages in hygienic practices for good health, cyber hygiene practices are crucial for keeping the data safe. With good cyber hygiene, you are sure of maintaining properly functioning assets and systems by protecting them from attacks, such as malware.
Cyber hygiene denotes the practices and cautions that businesses use to keep their data organized, safe, and secure. In this post, we will outline the best practices for cyber hygiene in manufacturing.
Understanding Common Cyber Hygiene Related Issues by Iskander Makhmudov
For a manufacturing unit to run optimally, maintenance is paramount for both computers and software. Often, files can become fragmented and programs outdated, increasing your system’s vulnerability. Other cyber hygiene-related issues include:
- Loss of data.
- Data misplacement.
- Security breaches.
- Outdated software.
- Older security software.
With good cyber hygiene, it becomes easy to identify these issues early enough and avoid more serious problems from happening. So, here are some of the best practices in cyber hygiene:
Document All Your Manufacturing Equipment and Programs
To keep your data safe and optimize its safety, the first step is documenting all the hardware, software, and applications that your system uses. One of the best ways of doing this is developing a list of three core components:
- Hardware: These are the machines and devices in your manufacturing unit. Examples include boilers, cutting machines, computers, printers, and fax machines.
- Software: These are programs that are installed directly into your manufacturing facility to run the production system.
- Applications: These are applications that are not directly installed on your devices. A good example is a mobile marketing app.
Analyze the Equipment and Programs
After creating the full list of equipment and programs, you should start analyzing them to identify vulnerabilities. Unused equipment in your facility should be disposed of properly. Then, software and programs that are outdated should be updated, and their passwords changed.
Some programs should be selected and dedicated to some functions for all users. For example, if you use both Dropbox and Google Drive, consider one as the primary option while the other is selected for backup.
Develop a Cyber Hygiene Policy
For your cyber hygiene to be effective, it is paramount to have a common set of practices and rules. If you have multiple users, such as team leaders, departmental heads, and managers, make sure that these procedures are combined into a policy. Here are some of the common items to include in such a policy:
- Software updates.
- Password changes.
- Hardware updates.
- Managing new installs.
- Data backup.
- Limiting users.
Creating a comprehensive cyber hygiene system is a must for today’s manufacturing enterprises. When implemented in conjunction with enterprise-wide security practices, good cybersecurity hygiene can aid in reducing disruptions and optimizing profitability.