Cybersecurity Essentials: Protect Your Reputation During a Cyber Attack

Published on 9th September 2018

Image of lock sitting on top of laptop keyboard

In the age of technological innovation, interconnected systems are one of the most valuable assets for companies – but our increasing dependence on technology has created greater exposure to the risk of cyber attack.

The risk of cyber attack is twofold: Not only is there a risk of compromising your company’s information, but also damaging the brand image.

In fact, the Standing Partnership/Edison Research survey found 34 percent of executives reported that IT and security issues had created a reputation problem in the past, with more than half anticipating similar problems in the future.

Standing Partnership works with technology solutions companies to protect their clients and proactively guard against cybersecurity issues. They outline several key considerations when addressing cybersecurity:

Understand How Risk Differs from Crisis 

Companies are judged not by whether they experience a crisis, but how they handle it.

Unfortunately, crises happen whether we’re ready for them or not. Although crises can result from both external or internal factors, organizations usually recover more quickly from external crises. Stakeholders typically forgive unintentional harm more easily than purposeful misdeeds.

On the other hand, crises resulting from purposeful misdeeds or negligence are more difficult for stakeholders to look past. Not every risk causes a crisis, but the ones that an organization could have prevented or prepared for are the ones that cause long-term reputational damage.

To further clarify the difference between risk and crises, consider the example of cyber hacking. Cyber hacking is a threat that organizations can’t control. However, recognizing the risk gives the organization the opportunity to evaluate their IT/OT infrastructure. From this, the organization can then outline policies to identify and close loopholes and establish a plan for a timely and effective communication response.

Pro Tip: Take a proactive approach to cybersecurity by creating an inventory of potential threats on a periodic basis. Then, develop plans to lessen the impact if any occur and outline ways to de-escalate each issue.

Ready to start preparing your cyber attack crisis plan? Get the four best practices for crisis preparation from Standing Partnership on their blog.


Standing Partnership is a marketing and corporate communications consulting firm located in St. Louis that excels at strategy and execution. Since 1991, their consultants have worked with business leaders in agriculture, healthcare, professional services, manufacturing and other major industries to accelerate growth by tying marketing to the bottom line. Through messaging, brand identity, executive communications, stakeholder engagement, corporate social responsibility reporting, and crisis preparedness, Standing Partnership helps organizations gain market and societal acceptance.

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