How to respond to a cyberattack

Protecting your business means having to defend it from all aspects – financial, operational, and even digital. Is your business ready to take a hit in case of an emergency? Is your staff prepared for it? Do you have any contingency plans in case of an attack?

Cybersecurity can affect a lot of industries, and dealing with a cyberattack is one of the critical issues an organization looks into. Cyberattacks may not only happen from the outside, but it can also occur from the inside. Your business may get targeted by cybercriminals. It’s always best to be prepared.  Here are some ways to respond from a cyberattack.

Form your incident response team

When a cyber-attack happens, the team must be able to act quickly. The incident response team may include the IT personnel to investigate the attack, the HR team as this may affect the employees, intellectual property and data protection experts, and a PR team. You may also opt to get external members such as ServiceNow Incident Response trained individuals if your team does not have the resources or capabilities to address the attack.

Investigate thoroughly

An investigation needs to take place to know what the impact of the attack is, what needs to be done, and what the effects will be. The organization will need to decide who takes the lead for this. It’s important to do documentation as this may be required for future use.

Secure systems

After the attack, the first action to be taken is to secure all IT systems to ensure that the attack has stopped. Know how the attack was detected and where it came from. Also, check if other systems have been affected. As repairs are done, portions of the system may get affected, and expect your business to be disrupted.

Let the authorities know

Depending on your area, you will need to let authorities know about the attack. Inform the police, any agencies involved in cybercrime and trade. Ensure that you have proper documentation and report that you can submit to the authorities.


Manage your PR

Public relations are very important, especially if your business falls under consumer goods. Not all security attacks need to be public, but if it concerns people’s personal information getting leaked, it’s important to form a timely PR response after. Keep in mind that the response has to be accurate and honest.

Create your post-attack report

After the attack, create your report. Note down what happened, where the attack was detected, what was done, and what can be done in the future to prevent it from happening again. This document can then be shared with your whole team. Your team needs to know what happened so that they will know what effects it has on the organization and how they can prevent it from happening.
From here, you can resolve to train the team again for better security, hire more experts, and strengthen your systems from future attacks.

Train your team

Whether the attack came from an outside hacker, an inside job,  or a virus from a suspicious email, this is the best time to refresh your employee’s knowledge of cybersecurity. Teach them how to find and respond to cyberattacks. Often, human resources would be the weakest in the information security link.


Cyberattacks can disrupt your business and cost you a lot of money. Being prepared for it by training your team, creating a response team, and investigating properly may help prevent any attacks in the future.