How we are supporting sports organisations to protect themselves against the threat of cyber attacks.

In an age where sports organisations and National Governing Bodies (NGBs) are becoming increasingly reliant on digital systems, the importance of solid cyber security cannot be overstated.

The digital transformation of the sports industry has introduced incredible opportunities for greater efficiency and member engagement, but it has also brought about new and unique risks.

In this article, we'll explain why cyber security should be a critical priority for NGBs, and demonstrate how we at Sport:80 are supporting sports organisations to protect themselves in the digital landscape.

NGBs can make valuable targets for hackers, as they often hold vast amounts of sensitive data such as member information, financial records, and more.

Data breaches, financial loss, and reputational damage represent just a handful of potential consequences.

To stay safe, it is critical that NBGs establish a proactive cyber security strategy and implement the necessary measures to safeguard their organisation, for example:

  • Encrypting Data: NGBs should employ robust encryption techniques to safeguard sensitive member data, financial records, and any other confidential information. This ensures that even if a cyber criminal gains access to the data, it remains unreadable and unusable without the decryption key.
  • Securing Member Portals: This involves multi-factor authentication, strong password policies, and regular security audits, preventing unauthorised access and data breaches.
  • Regularly Updating Software: Cyber attackers often exploit vulnerabilities in outdated software. NGBs should regularly update their operating systems, applications, and plugins to patch known vulnerabilities.
  • Providing Comprehensive Employee Training: NGBs should invest in comprehensive cyber security training for all employees. When employees are educated about potential threats and how to respond to them, they become a valuable line of defence against cyberattacks.
  • Implementing Firewall and Intrusion Detection Systems: Firewalls filter incoming and outgoing network traffic to block potential threats, while Intrusion Detection Systems monitor network activities. Implementing both of these is critical for identifying and mitigating threats in real-time.
  • Regularly Backing Up Data: NGBs should establish a robust data backup strategy to ensure that critical information can be restored in case of data loss incidents.
  • Conducting Vulnerability Assessments: Regular vulnerability assessments and penetration testing should be conducted to identify weaknesses in an NGB's cyber security infrastructure. This proactive approach helps organisations uncover vulnerabilities before cyber criminals do.
  • Incident Response Plan: NGBs should have a well-defined incident response plan in place. This plan outlines the steps to take in the event of an incident, and ensures the organisation can respond swiftly to mitigate damage and protect sensitive data.
  • Partnering with Cyber Security Experts: Experts can offer specialised knowledge, threat intelligence, and 24/7 monitoring to identify and respond to threats promptly.
  • Compliance with Regulations: NGBs should be aware of relevant cybersecurity regulations and compliance requirements specific to their industry. This helps to protect sensitive data and avoid potential legal consequences.

By creating multiple layers of security, NGBs can make it much more difficult for cyber criminals to breach defences.

To support our clients in achieving this, we not only implement a number of measures and safeguards to protect the sensitive data stored within the Sport:80 Platform, but also ensure that we do so within our own business, and support clients to do so in theirs.

For example, two-factor authentication (2FA) is mandatory for admin users and available to all, to protect against unauthorised access and threats such as bulk phishing attacks. Similarly, stringent password creation standards reduce the risk of breaches associated with weak or old passwords. We also mitigate security risks by ensuring users employ up-to-date software, as outdated systems and unsupported browsers often contribute to cyber attack vulnerability.

Additionally: regular penetration tests help us swiftly address vulnerabilities, reducing the risk of data breaches; CloudFlare's real-time cyber attack monitoring system automatically blocks threats; Strict internal database access protect sensitive client information from unauthorised access; Data encryption ensures confidentiality even in the event of a breach; Our ISO 27001, Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus accreditations underline our commitment to global standards in information security management.

Sport:80 understand the unique cyber security needs of sports organisations, and as a result security is paramount within our Platform.

Our commitment to cyber security is unwavering, and assures our clients that they can trust us to protect their data and operations.

Clearly, effective cyber security is not an option, but a necessity for sports organisations and NGBs in today's digital era. The risks are real, but so are the rewards of taking it seriously.

Sport:80 is committed to providing cutting-edge solutions which protect your digital assets and ensure the integrity of your operations.

Don't wait until a cyber attack disrupts your game plan. Get in touch to learn more about how our Platform can bolster your cyber security defences.