4 min read

Improving Incident Management with Incident Response Automation

April 27, 2022

Data breaches, system outages, and cyberattacks have grown more destructive to businesses in the past few years. As digital transformation has accelerated, so has cybercrime. And with cyberattacks on the rise, the risk of compromising data, system security, and business productivity have increased alongside it.

Attacks and breaches can wreak havoc on a business and cost real dollars: The cost of cybercrime is predicted to hit $10.5 trillion by 2025. And a single attack (whether it’s a data breach, malware, ransomware, or DDoS attack) costs companies of all sizes an average of $200,000. Many affected companies have gone out of business within six months of the attack.

IT teams must do everything they can to alleviate risks to company information and system security. It’s key to quickly mitigate, contain and eliminate threats with a robust incident response plan. ITSM software can help teams automate their incident response to better organize their processes and address threats more quickly.


What are Risk Management and Incident Response?

Protecting your company data, assets, network, and systems is vital for every organization, from a small startup to the largest enterprise. That means regular risk management and strong incident response. If you aren’t familiar, here’s a quick definition of the terms:

  • Risk Management: The practice of analyzing, identifying, and diminishing risks to your systems and organization.
  • Incident Response (IR): The organized process by which your team detects, contains, and eliminates cyberattacks, outages, or other system risks.

Every internal IT team must regularly assess risk and create an incident response plan to help contain and eliminate a threat as quickly as possible. An incident response plan includes a detailed set of policies and procedures that should be continuously updated and fine-tuned as new risks are discovered.

Your unique response plan will vary depending on the type and amount of data you store, what systems, software, and networks you use, risk types, and the tools you have that can help you fight a threat.

It may also differ depending on what kind of threat or incident you plan to counter. For example, the response to a phishing attack would operate very differently than if you had to respond to a system outage.



ITSM software has several tools that will help you accelerate and strengthen your incident response. Here’s how it can help you solidify your approach to threats.

  •  IT Automation. Arguably, the most powerful feature of a quality ITSM platform is its automation capability, and it certainly comes in handy during an incident response. Obviously, each threat is different, and the solution to each problem will vary. However, IT automation can help drive the repeatable actions and steps your teams should take to solve problems, saving time and reducing the attack’s impact.
    •  Automate Complex Workflows: The IT team can plan and structure specific workflows that accompany your IR plan depending on the threat type. You can create specific rules and logic, trigger actions, and automate intricate workflows that route IR tickets immediately.
    • Prioritize: Threats and cyberattacks are always urgent. Some ITSM solutions allow you to triage your tickets, so you can propel IR tickets to the top of the queue when a risk becomes a reality.
    • Route Approvals Quickly: Your IR might stall if your team gets bogged down with back-and-forth. The right ITSM software enables you to route a predetermined chain of approvals for your IR workflows so all the relevant stakeholders can seamlessly sign off and move tickets to resolution.
  • Process Management Tools. Using process management tools, you can build your entire risk management process and IR plan into your ITSM software.
    •  Embed SOPs: Make threat-fighting SOPs simple to access during an incident. Embed SOPs into tickets, attach relevant documentation, and send instructions for service reps to help containment and threat elimination.
    •  Organize Tickets: Some ITSM solutions will allow you to organize your tickets in groups for more seamless workflows. Categorize your tickets by department, location, project, or urgent IR response.
    • Communicate Effectively: An outage or cyberattack can impact your entire company. Choose an ITSM software solution that allows you to broadcast urgent news and status updates so your teams can stay alert to threats.
  • Continuing Training and Resource Library. Some ITSM platforms will include a resource hub, knowledge base, or content library that can help educate your organization about risks, security protocols, and best practices to avoid serious incidents. You can use a resource content hub to act as the epicenter for training your IT teams in risk management and incident response. The more aware and prepared for threats your team is, the more protected they are likely to be.
    • Bonus: You can document your post-mortems of past attacks and keep those records in your knowledge base. These learnings may help with future IR planning and steps.


Protect Your Organization From Threats With ITSM Software

As attacks grow more sophisticated, so should the tools to fight them. IT automation helps save critical time during an incident and helps push containment and eliminate threats.

If you’d like to see how ITSM software can help protect your business when you need it most, try DeskDirector for free. Sign up today.


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