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Don’t let these cybersecurity threats be your downfall

Written on Aug 10, 2023

By Jessica Salerno-Shumaker, OSCPA senior content manager  

The right approach to cybersecurity could be what puts you ahead of the competition. 

“If you do security and compliance well, then you can go in a direction faster, under more control, which means you can grow a lot quicker without potentially hitting a road bump,” said Luke Kiely, chief information security officer at SmartVault.  

Kiely will present “Data, Cloud & Cyber Security” at the Ohio Accounting Shows this fall, covering what accountants should consider when implementing cybersecurity and how best to protect their organization.  

Strong cybersecurity will protect your organization or minimize its pain in the future, Kiely said, giving you the opportunity to keep up with the pace of business. Part of that means paying attention to what’s going on in the news, because oftentimes those events are exploited and used to infiltrate an organization.  

“Geopolitically, it is important to know what's going on because hackers will literally masquerade behind unfortunate events to further their own gains,” he said. 

Organizations that are increasing their cybersecurity need to approach it from a holistic perspective. Kiely said to consider the size of the organization, the value of what’s being protected, if people work remotely or in an office, user training and other factors.  

“You hear about insider risk, which is not about people necessarily doing things deliberately, it's people doing things accidentally,” he said.  

If an organization takes a relaxed approach to issues like phishing or malware, that will impact the employees. If staff aren’t properly trained and looking out for these attacks, eventually someone will put the organization at risk, even if they didn’t mean to.   

“There is a combined approach between technology and the people side,” he said. “You've got to think internally about how you need to protect your business and yourself before you can go externally.”  

Making sure your organization is in compliance with the necessary guardrails is also critical for the future, Kiely said, as it can help protect the company from regulation penalties and hackers.  

“Having a compliance lens really does help mitigate the threat landscape,” he said.  

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