What Is Layered Cybersecurity?

Fact: You can never protect your business 100% from cyberattack, no matter how many IT security tools you use. Anyone who tells you different is lying. 

However, you can significantly reduce your risk. In our opinion, you can reduce your risk by at least 95%, simply by relying on layered cybersecurity.  

 TL;DR No cybersecurity method is perfect. Cybersecurity layering is the tactic of using many types of security, so you can help mitigate the vulnerabilities of each type and create a stronger defense. Contact Interplay to learn more.  

What Is Layered Cybersecurity?

Let’s start with an analogy. By now, you’ve surely seen the ubiquitous Swiss cheese image that explains layered protection from the coronavirus. The best-known version of that image was created before the vaccine was invented (but clearly would now include the vaccine): 

The point of this model is to show people that every layer of COVID protection has holes that the virus can slip through. When it comes to infection, no single method can protect you 100%. However, doctors clearly state that the more layers of protection you use –  hand washing, vaccines, social distancing, masks, gathering outdoors, etc. – the more you can reduce your risk. Perhaps you can reduce your risk 95% or more by relying on “layered protection.” 

You can see where we’re going here. 

Just like health protection, cyberattack protection requires using a wide range of solutions, each of which tries to plug potential holes in other solutions.  

The tactic of using multiple prevention methods for your IT is called “layered cybersecurity.” 

The Three Leading Layers of Cybersecurity

It makes logical sense to defend technology with technology, which is why AI and other automated tech tools get so much attention when experts start talking about layered cybersecurity. But technology is only ONE of the many layers companies should implement – here’s the full list. 

1. People

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: your employees are your first line of defense against any cyberthreats heading your way. In fact, we’ll say it again right now: your employees are your first line of defense against cyberthreats. 

However, even though your people are your first line of defense, company leaders still seem to think that implementing more tech is the best option for securing the business. Not only can that thinking waste a lot of your money, it’s also likely to create a lot of security holes. The best way to begin setting up a layered approach to cybersecurity is to train your employees, so that cybersecurity becomes second nature to them. 

Some smart training programs include: 

  • KnowBe4’s phishing awareness training, which helps employees ID and avoid phishing and social engineering attacks 
  • Acceptable Use Policy training, which helps employees understand and adhere to your business’s carefully crafted tech policies
  • Cloud security training, which helps employees apply critical thinking to navigate safely through the hundreds of internet security pitfalls they may encounter every week 


2. Processes

Another great way that cybersecurity layering protects your business is by establishing and enforcing processes that keep you safe. Here’s another COVID analogy for you: mask-wearing. 

Boy, was it a process to get people to remember to wear their masks! In early 2020, how many times did you forget your mask in the car and suddenly realize you were the only person in the Safeway parking lot whose smile was visible? At this point, putting on a mask has become a standard process because it adds a layer to our protection. 

Similarly, standardized processes can help add more layered cybersecurity for businesses – though processes, in this case, would include: 

  • Performing regular backups, so it’s easy to reboot if a cyberattacker succeeds in damaging your data
  • Setting up a Zero Trust methodology that helps you block intruders better than the older, more vulnerable firewall methodologies
  • Applying patches quickly, which you can think of as a literal patch. If you had a gaping hole in your mask, it wouldn’t offer COVID protection anymore. But if you patched that hole, protection would be restored.


3. Technology

There are a lot of great tech tools out there to help you maintain your cybersecurity. The main use of these tools is to ease the burden of having to manually keep an eye on all your tech, which helps you respond more quickly to emerging issues. 

Some of our favorite solutions include: 

  • Managed Detection and Response, which uses AI to monitor all activity across your network and quickly auto-escalates anomalous behavior to real humans for intelligent assessment
  • Remote monitoring software, which makes it easier to keep all your devices up to date with patches at all times because it allows for remote management by a trained IT security company (like us!) 
  • Using a password manager like 1Password to ensure that employees select unique, hard-to-remember passwords for every account 

Explore Layered Security with Interplay

Interplay is an IT support and IT security company that takes your business protection seriously. In the past, we used to offer an a la carte selection of cybersecurity measures that helped businesses choose their own ways to boost protection. However, with today’s growing threat environment, we’ve switched to providing an advanced layered cybersecurity approach for every single one of our clients. As we see it, it’s simply the right thing to do. 

Learn More About Interplay’s Comprehensive Security Approach

For 20+ years, the friendly and knowledgeable team at Interplay in Seattle has helped business leaders across a range of industries get more out of their tech, stress-free. Not only are we always (and we mean always) happy to offer the best managed IT services, support, and advice, we’re also the team you can trust for the best cocktail recommendations here in Seattle or in Disney World – we’re versatile! All humor aside though, we’d love to help you get your IT running smoothly and securely, around the clock.