Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Threat Intelligence

Mastercard, GCA Create Small Business Cybersecurity Toolkit

A new toolkit developed by the Global Cybersecurity Alliance aims to give small businesses a cookbook for better cybersecurity.

Small and mid-sized businesses have most of the same cybersecurity concerns of larger enterprises. What they don't have are the resources to deal with them. A new initiative, the Cybersecurity Toolkit, is intended to bridge that gulf and give small companies the ability to keep themselves safer in an online environment that is increasingly dangerous.

The Toolkit, a join initiative of the Global Cyber Alliance (GCA) and Mastercard, is intended to give small business owners basic, usable, security controls and guidance. It's not, says Alexander Niejelow, senior vice president for cyber security coordination and advocacy and MasterCard, that there's no information available to the small business owners. He points out that government agencies in the U.S. and the U.K. provide a lot of information on cybersecurity for businesses.

It's just that, "It's very hard for small businesses to consume that. What we wanted to do was remove the barriers to effective action," he says, and go beyond broad guidance to giving them very specific instructions presented, "…if at all possible in a video format and clear easy to use tools that they could use right now to go in and significantly reduce their cyber risk so they could be more secure and more economically stable in both the short and long term."

Improving security for small businesses can have an enormous international impact, Niejelow says. "Around the world, small businesses are critical to people's economic success and survival. At the same time we as an industry and a group of countries have left small businesses behind when it comes to cybersecurity."

The GCA has partnered with several organizations, with Mastercard's sponsorship, to create the GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit. The partners include the Center for Internet Security, the Cyber Readiness Institute, the City of London and the City of New York. According to the announcement of the initiative, The Cybersecurity Toolkit includes a number of specific sections, including:

  • Operational tools that help them take inventory of their cyber-related assets, create and maintain strong passwords, use multi-factor authentication, perform backups of critical data, prevent phishing and viruses;
  • How-to materials, such as template policies and forms, training videos, and other foundational documents they can customize for their organizations;
  • Recognized best practices from leading organizations in the industry including the Center for Internet Security Controls, the UK's National Cyber Security Centre Cyber Essentials, the Australian Cyber Security Centre's Essential Eight, and Mastercard.

Phil Reitinger, president and CEO of GCA says that they hope to see a dramatic uptake of information from the toolkit in a very short period of time. "Our stated goal here is to have a broad effect, and the stated goal is we want to reach a million businesses in 1,000 days," he says.

As for how those businesses should use the information, "We've tried to put a bunch of tools together that small businesses can actually use," Reitinger explains, continuing, "If we make it so simple that the family dry cleaner with a mom, a dad ,and two kids can do what they need to do, then the rest will flow from that."

"Small businesses individuals are not dumb," Reitinger says. "They are exceedingly smart people but a truck driver is good at driving a truck; he's not so good necessarily at securing his own computer." And Niejelow says that business owners shouldn't need to be cybersecurity professionals. He explains, "It's time we reduced the complexity of this issue and start making it more approachable so that our businesses can get back to doing what they do extremely well."

Related Content:

 

 

Join Dark Reading LIVE for two cybersecurity summits at Interop 2019. Learn from the industry's most knowledgeable IT security experts. Check out the Interop agenda here.

Curtis Franklin Jr. is Senior Editor at Dark Reading. In this role he focuses on product and technology coverage for the publication. In addition he works on audio and video programming for Dark Reading and contributes to activities at Interop ITX, Black Hat, INsecurity, and ... View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
News
US Formally Attributes SolarWinds Attack to Russian Intelligence Agency
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  4/15/2021
News
Dependency Problems Increase for Open Source Components
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  4/14/2021
News
FBI Operation Remotely Removes Web Shells From Exchange Servers
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  4/14/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-31607
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-23
In SaltStack Salt 2016.9 through 3002.6, a command injection vulnerability exists in the snapper module that allows for local privilege escalation on a minion. The attack requires that a file is created with a pathname that is backed up by snapper, and that the master calls the snapper.diff function...
CVE-2021-31597
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-23
The xmlhttprequest-ssl package before 1.6.1 for Node.js disables SSL certificate validation by default, because rejectUnauthorized (when the property exists but is undefined) is considered to be false within the https.request function of Node.js. In other words, no certificate is ever rejected.
CVE-2021-2296
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-22
Vulnerability in the Oracle VM VirtualBox product of Oracle Virtualization (component: Core). The supported version that is affected is Prior to 6.1.20. Difficult to exploit vulnerability allows high privileged attacker with logon to the infrastructure where Oracle VM VirtualBox executes to compromi...
CVE-2021-2297
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-22
Vulnerability in the Oracle VM VirtualBox product of Oracle Virtualization (component: Core). The supported version that is affected is Prior to 6.1.20. Difficult to exploit vulnerability allows high privileged attacker with logon to the infrastructure where Oracle VM VirtualBox executes to compromi...
CVE-2021-2298
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-22
Vulnerability in the MySQL Server product of Oracle MySQL (component: Server: Optimizer). Supported versions that are affected are 8.0.23 and prior. Easily exploitable vulnerability allows low privileged attacker with network access via multiple protocols to compromise MySQL Server. Successful attac...