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Incident Response Plan: Computer Forensics

Incident Response Plan: Computer Forensics

Problem Identification

In the light of current technological advances and innovations, it is important for the company to develop an incident response plan that can protect it from cyber invasions and strategies threatening confidentiality. There are many problems and threats, which can be encountered by an organization, such as cyber viruses, information leakage, and inappropriate data transfer among departments. Therefore, computer forensics should become part of daily operations of any companies who strive to sustain competitive advantage and promote security and safety among employees. The major problem can be leakage of information to the third party, which can be carried out by employees. Therefore, the task of the leader is to choose the right people who are more motivated to ensure security. Furthermore, technological gadgets should also be protected from an electronic theft, so that each step taken by the personnel is controlled and checked irrespective of preliminary protection mechanisms.

Response Strategies

There is a list of subsequent steps, which should be introduced for implementing an incident response plan. First of all, the leader should prepare the IT personnel to take control of incidents and define whether there is a threat of invasion or computer damage. Further, IT experts should highlight the damage and the problem to eliminate them immediately and reduce negative outcomes for the entire computer system, as well as prevent future damages. As soon as the damage has been detected, it is essential to promote corresponding measures directed at protecting the system from similar incidents. The next step should involve eradication, which implies exploring the genuine reason for an incident, eliminating affected systems, and ensuring safety of the production environment. The recovery stage should also permit the damaged system to restore its productivity and return the previous production environment, guaranteeing that similar threats will not affect the system. The task of IT experts is to ensure that incidents are detected, and the performance analysis is carried out to prevent these damages in the future.

Major Stakeholders

The incident response plan should outline the major participants, along with tools used and responsibilities taken during damage elimination. It is logical that the major stakeholders here are IT managers, employees, security control managers, and total quality control managers who should participate in plan writing and validation. The information security department should also be involved to take control of data flows, provide alternative decisions regarding handling technical knowledge an exert a business influence. The presentation of an electronic data protocol is provided by employees. They should estimate the scale of damage and promote a new scheme for managing hardware protection mechanisms. Apart from the internal stakeholders working on the problem, there should also be an external analysis and inspection team, who should provide an objective evaluation of the situation and further recommendations for an incident response. They should analyze reports and statistical data about the incident and should receive access to all information from the database to make the final verdict regarding the case.

Investigation of the Problem

The incident response plan can provide benefits for the enterprise by defining how to reduce the scale of damage and the duration of a security incident, defining stakeholders, advancing recovery time, directing forensic analysis, and decreasing negative publicity. The plan should also define responsibilities of response team members. There are various methods used for investigating, analyzing and developing new mechanisms that will strengthen the protection of online data and electronic information about company’s clients and activities. Ethical and moral issues should be taken into consideration because the company should be able to hire reliable and professional employees who are ready to adhere to confidentiality rules. As soon as these requirements are met, the incident response plan can become more effective.

Recommendations and Conclusion

In order to ensure the proper information security level and highlight weaknesses related to the core damages, all incidents are communicated in a way permitting timely measures to be taken. Moreover, event reporting and escalation criteria should be presented in a formal incident response plan. Such criteria are composed of the following stages:

  1. Detection, which is based on the primary evaluation and triage of security issues regarding the damaged system, involving the escalation of information security and a policy imposing a new incident priority level.
  2. Analysis implies the performance of a detailed damage evaluation to provide priorities in response activities in case of violations having a great negative impact. As soon as evidence preservation activities have been introduced, it is purposeful to proceed with the initial recovery that will remove problems in a timely manner.
  3. Recovery involves the assessment of the nature and severity of the incident, mitigation of its influence by terminating eradication and containment activities, and recovering from it. During this state, it is important to conduct detection and analyssis to define if extra areas are infected by malware to stop the spread of the problem. Finally, a post-incident response is introduced as soon as the incident has been properly eliminated. During this stage, it is essential to develop a report, which can define the major causes of the incident and determine the corresponding steps for preventing similar incidents in the future.

All the personnel, including third party users and contractors should become aware of the processes for detecting and reporting various types of situations, which can have an influence on the security of devices used by the company. They should also report information security issues in the shortest time possible.

Response activists and all stakeholders should work on ensuring incident response plan accomplishment and should receive a list containing names, responsibilities and contact information about the local incident response team, including a resource manager and an incident handler. The task of the latter is to search for security and alternate contactors who have system admin credentials, as well as the technical knowledge of the system and the incident response plan. The resource manager is the one who is responsible for the analysis of business consequences of the damage and its limited unavailability. He or she should be competent in taking resource management activities. System details, procedures, location, and analysis should also be involved in the responsibilities of the above-mentioned stakeholders.

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It is highly important to determine priorities and resources required for deploying corrective measures. In this respect, the resource manager should evaluate the influence of a security incident in terms of different factors, such as the functionality of the damaged system, any cases of the violation of confidentiality or the integrity of data, percentage of the population involved in the incident, and its financial outcomes. With these factors in mind, a security incident should be evaluated and assigned a priority level by an incident or resource manager. Factors used for the evaluation should include the current influence of the incident. They should also affect the latter, if it has not been corrected immediately. Therefore, the priority of incidents should be correlated with their handling procedures. Once a security problem has been reported to the expert, its priority should be identified and confirmed for further actions and measures. Instances of high priority issues should also involve the management and elimination of the loss of critical functions. Therefore, all possible security measures should be taken for preventing damages in the future.

 
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