Cyber attacks are increasing in frequency and sophistication, and a reactive strategy is not enough to protect businesses in Ghana. Assessing risks, creating policies and procedures and implementing technological controls are all part of a proactive cybersecurity strategy. In this blog I will break down the main components of a proactive cybersecurity strategy, and give an example of how a Ghanaian health care provider successfully implemented one.

  1. A thorough risk analysis is essential to understand the threats and vulnerabilities that your business may face. It involves identifying assets that require protection, evaluating potential threats and weaknesses, and determining likelihood and impact of an attack. A comprehensive risk analysis can help to prioritize security efforts and effectively allocate resources.
  1. After assessing the risks, you can develop policies and procedures to manage them. These policies could cover password management, data handling and handling of sensitive information, as well as access control. It is important to establish procedures for employee training, regular security assessments and incident reporting.
  1. Security Controls: You can implement technical controls to protect yourself from cyber threats. Firewalls, antivirus software and intrusion detection and prevention systems as well as network segmentation could be included. Patching and updating software regularly can also help address vulnerabilities.

A case study on a Ghanaian healthcare facility demonstrates the importance and value of taking a proactive cybersecurity approach. The healthcare provider regularly backed up its data and stored it in a secure location off-site. They also implemented a program of staff training to increase awareness of phishing scams, and other tactics commonly used by cybercriminals. They were targeted by ransomware, but they were able restore their data using the backups.

Consider the following tips when developing a proactive cyber security strategy for your Ghanaian business:

  1. Assessing risks thoroughly is essential to identify vulnerabilities and threats.
  2. Create policies and procedures for managing these risks, and create a culture of security within your organization.
  3. Use technical controls, such as firewalls, anti-virus software, and intrusion detection/prevention (IDP) systems, to protect your network against cyber threats.
  4. Update software and systems regularly to fix vulnerabilities.
  5. Inform employees about the importance of reporting incidents and cybersecurity best practices.
  6. Considering a layered security strategy ensures security is architected with multiple points of failure in mind.

A proactive approach to cybersecurity in Ghana is crucial for business. You can protect your company from cyber-attacks by assessing risks, developing policies, procedures and technical controls. This will help you avoid financial and reputational damages that come with successful attacks. Do not wait until it is too late to develop a proactive cybersecurity strategy.