Cybersecurity Incident Response: A Guide for Business.

You’ve had a breach!! Your server is down, data breached and malware is rifling through your sensitive information. It’s a disaster. Where do you go from here? What is your cybersecurity incident response? Let’s cut through the noise and let Leaf offer a roadmap for your recovery from unauthorised access.

“Cybersecurity incidents are a fact of life for businesses of all sizes in the UK and Ireland. In 2022, there were over 1.2 million cybersecurity incidents reported in the UK alone, with the average cost of a data breach reaching £3.2 million.”

Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2022 by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)

Cybersecurity Incident

Cybersecurity Incident: A Definition

Firstly, let’s get a firm grip on the subject at hand. A cybersecurity incident is any event that compromises the confidentiality, integrity, or availability of an organisation’s information or systems. This includes data breaches, malware infections, and denial-of-service attacks.

While knowing its definition is a start, negating the risk is another story. An important step for businesses to take is a cybersecurity incident response. Planning for the worst is key to minimise risk and therefore reduce damages caused, here are some key aspects:

Risk Identification

First, identify the risks that your business faces. This includes understanding the types of cybersecurity incidents that are most likely to occur, as well as the potential impact of those incidents.


Next, detect the cybersecurity incident that has occurred. This can be done through a variety of methods, such as monitoring security logs, employee training, and vulnerability scanning.


Once an incident has been detected, it is important to contain it as quickly as possible. This may involve isolating the affected systems, removing malware, or blocking malicious traffic.


Once the incident has been contained, it is important to investigate the cause of the incident and the extent of the damage. This information can be used to improve the organisation’s security posture and as a consequence, prevent future incidents.


Once the investigation is complete, it is time to begin recovering from the incident. This may involve restoring data, rebuilding systems, and notifying affected parties.

Test the plan

Once you have developed a response plan, it is important to test it to make sure that it is effective. This can be done through a variety of methods, such as table-top exercises or simulated attacks.

Review and Refine

The cybersecurity landscape is constantly changing, so it is important to review and update your response plan on a regular basis. As a consequence, organisations can ensure their plans are up-to-date and effective.

Human Error & Cybersecurity Incidents

cybersecurity incident

According to an IBM Cybersecurity Intelligence Index Report, investigating thousands of breaches in 130 countries, human error was the main contributing factor to security breaches.

‘Human error was a major contributing cause in 95% of all breaches’ (IBM Cybersecurity Intelligence Index Report)

Employee Strategy

Below is a list of preventative measures for employees to adopt:

  1. Don’t reveal sensitive information – never reveal personal information i.e. passwords or financial information
  2. Check website security measures – an ‘HTTP’ indicates the domain has not applied for security measures however, ‘HTTPS’ is a sign it has
  3. Be aware of website URL variations – be wary of different spellings of domain names. Pay close attention to whether the URL has been altered in some way to masquerade as a trusted sender
  4. Verify suspicious emails by reaching out directly to the business – should you receive an email requesting information, reach out through other means to verify before any transaction takes place
  5. Update and protect – periodically update your operating system, software and web browser. In addition, install robust antivirus and malware protection

For more information, check out our phishing prevention article.

Executive Strategy

Below is a list for C-level/Executive professionals:

  1. Create a cybersecurity policy and communicate it to all employees. First, the policy should outline the organisation’s security goals and expectations, as well as the procedures that employees must follow to protect the organisation’s data and systems
  2. Implement strong security controls. This includes things like firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and data encryption
  3. Educate employees about cybersecurity risks. Employees should be aware of the latest threats and how to protect themselves from them
  4. Monitor your organisation’s security posture. This includes regularly reviewing your security controls and lastly, testing your incident response plan
  5. Have a plan in place for responding to a cyberattack. Finally, organisations should plan for the worst. The plan should first, outline the steps that you will take to contain the attack, next, investigate the incident, and finally, recover from the damage. Otherwise known, as a cybersecurity incident response plan

See more in our dedicated cybersecurity article for C-level professionals.

Cybersecurity Incident Response Toolkit

c-level cybersecurity practices : SIEM tool

ConnectWise have robust SIEM solutions

  • Security information and event management (SIEM) tools: SIEM tools collect and analyse security logs from across an organisation’s network.
  • Incident response platforms: Incident response platforms provide a central place for managing cybersecurity incidents. These platforms can help to automate tasks, such as notifying stakeholders and coordinating remediation efforts.
  • Threat intelligence platforms: Threat intelligence platforms provide organisations with information about known threats, such as malicious IP addresses and malware signatures. In addition, this information can be used to block threats before they reach an organisation’s network.
  • Data loss prevention (DLP) tools: DLP tools help to prevent the unauthorised disclosure of sensitive data. These tools can monitor and control data flows within an organisation’s network.
  • Endpoint security tools: Finally, endpoint security tools protect devices, such as computers and mobile devices, from malware and other threats. These tools can scan devices for malware, block malicious websites, therefore preventing unauthorised access to devices.

Importantly, no single technology can provide complete protection against cyberattacks. A comprehensive cybersecurity response plan should include a variety of technologies, in addition to well-trained employees who are able to use these technologies effectively.


In summary, cybersecurity incident response is a vital aspect of any organisation’s security strategy. With cyber threats increasing in frequency and complexity, it’s essential to have a well-prepared and effective incident response plan to minimise the impact of an attack and reduce the risk of future incidents. To achieve this, organisations need to take a proactive approach to incident response, including regular training and testing, in addition to, constant monitoring of systems and networks. Furthermore, organisations require clear communication and collaboration between all stakeholders. As a result of prioritising incident response preparedness, organisations can better protect their assets, maintain their reputation, and ultimately safeguard the trust of their customers and partners.

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