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Why Every Company Needs an Incident Response Plan

What is an Incident Response Plan?

Incident Response Plans (IRPs) are essential for every company that utilizes any form of information technology. IRPs outline what actions an organization would take if they experienced a security incident or a breach. Typically, the IRP lays out different steps to take based on the issue. 

That means the actions taken by an organization for cybercrime will differ from actions taken for service outages. The IRP must outline a detailed plan for how to tackle each cyber-related issue and how the company will move forward. For example, one topic that IRPs must cover is what to do if the company gets ransomware. Ransomware is some of the most common malware out there, and it can sneak into a company’s IT environment, causing many issues if not addressed. The IRP must outline whether the company will pay the ransom and how they will go about either removing the ransomware or reimaging the affected devices.


Who should make the Incident Response Plan?

The security incident response team (SIRT) should be responsible for creating the IRP. They will have the most knowledge and experience when it comes to handling incidents. However, it is also necessary for the SIRT to contact company lawyers or other legal entities so that all legal concerns get addressed within the IRP. Lastly, it is crucial to have your IRP reviewed by a third party. That will allow an outside set of eyes to review the IRP and suggest any edits. Ultimately, this will help to strengthen the IRP and will help the company to cover all aspects of responding to an incident.


Why do I need an Incident Response Plan?

No organization is safe from a cyber-attack. Just because your company hasn’t experienced an incident yet doesn’t mean it won’t be in the future. Hackers are working around the clock to target vulnerable organizations. Without having an IRP, a company will suffer when they are face to face with a security incident. The IRP must also be highly specific. It can not be a broad overview that generally covers most types of security incidents or breaches. The IRP must contain a plan of action for each kind of security incident and what the company would do in the case of a data breach.


IRPs help companies stay on track when they face a security incident. While implementing controls to prevent these incidents is good, there is no guarantee that your company will never experience a security breach. Take the time to create a detailed IRP and make sure to review it several times so that no vital steps are left out.


Learn how TechGuard can help create an incident response plan that fits the needs of your organization.

Written by Blake Potter