The Essential Eight: Simple Strategies to Protect Your Business 

Protecting your organisation, systems and confidential information from cyber threats is now more critical than ever.

With the sophistication of cyber attacks increasing, it’s important to have a vigorous defence strategy in place. The “Essential Eight” is a set of practical cyber security strategies designed to help Australian organisations protect their systems and information from a wide range of cyber threats.

Understanding the Essential Eight

The Essential Eight is a set of mitigation strategies developed by the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) to address common cyber security threats. These strategies serve as a baseline for cyber security preparedness and can be applied to various organisations, regardless of their size or industry.

1. Application Whitelisting 

Application whitelisting is the practice of allowing only approved applications to run on your systems. This helps prevent malicious software and minimises the attack surface.

2. Patch Applications

Keeping software and applications up-to-date is crucial. Regularly applying security patches and updates ensures that known vulnerabilities are patched, reducing the risk of exploitation. 

3. Configure Microsoft Office Macro Settings

Cyber criminals often use malicious macros in Microsoft Office documents to deliver malware. Configuring your Microsoft Office settings to disable unnecessary macros can help prevent these types of attacks. 

4. User Application Hardening

Enforce strict security settings on web browsers and email clients. By doing this, you reduce the risk of users unintentionally downloading malicious content or clicking on harmful links.

5. Restrict Administrative Privileges

Limiting administrative access to only those who need it reduces the likelihood of unauthorised access and minimises the potential for accidental misconfigurations. 

6. Patch Operating Systems

Just like with applications, regularly updating and patching operating systems means any vulnerabilities can’t be exploited by cyber criminals. 

7. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

MFA adds an additional layer of security by requiring users to provide multiple forms of verification before accessing sensitive data.  

8. Daily Backups

Regularly backing up critical data and systems enables the restoration of your organisation’s operations with minimal disruption.  

The Essential Eight offers a practical framework to protect your organisation against cyber threats, making it an imperative part of your cyber security strategy. Start implementing these simple, yet effective strategies to ensure the security, longevity and resilience of your organisation.

AUCloud specialises in providing Australian organisations the latest cloud storage, backup and managed cyber security solutions to help protect Australian organisations and their data.  Contact us for an obligation free consultation today.