Technology has played a crucial role in transforming businesses and keeping them afloat. It has optimized work and transformed how business operations work. But it’s not all rainbows and unicorns; technology also has a downside for your business – it makes your company available to cyber-attacks – something your company may not be equipped to handle.
Just because you have a small business does not mean you are secure from cyber-attack. Since every aspect of your business is dependent on computers and digitization, everyone must step up and safeguard their data.
So how to ensure your business is protected at all times? If you are wondering how to keep your data safe in a world where even large corporations are not safe, we have a solution for you.
Check out our top five ways to protect your business from cyber-attacks.
Attacks are possible anytime, so round-the-clock threat monitoring is the first step to keep your data safe. Following are the steps you can take:
1. Update Security Softwares Regularly
Any software being utilized by your company should be updated regularly, and your employees should be efficient enough to know that. Old software can make you more vulnerable to threats as they can have loopholes that the hackers may exploit. If anyone is successful in launching a cyber-attack and steal sensitive data from your company networks, it can cause huge damage to your business and its reputation. Since the stakes are too high, updating security software timely is crucial.
2. Enable Data Encryption
While it is important to store backups on any other place other than your network, data encryption remains one of the best ways to secure your data from breaches. A good cybersecurity strategy is incomplete without data encryption. Even if your data falls into the wrong hands, you would still be safe.
3. Security Assessment
Assess your existing security measures for efficacy and improvement. You can do so in the following way:
- Ensure Firewalls and antivirus software usage
Invest in an anti-malware software equipped enough to deal with any kind of threats. It is critical to prevent the threats from happening in the first place by using firewalls, but if anything strikes, good software will be able to catch and separate the malware.
- Install breach prevention tools
Tools like intrusion detection can come in very handy when you are trying to stay safe from online threats. As time is the essence in security, you have to ensure the employees are monitoring the threat detection tools, and if a breach occurs, the company is made aware as soon as possible.
Secure Company Hardware
Safeguarding, the company hardware is often overlooked when it comes to cybersecurity. Begin your company’s security with the basics; securing the company hardware and installing coaxial cable security cameras as loss or theft of devices can become a major threat if overlooked. Protect all your company devices with a strong password and discourage team members from sharing their passwords.
Besides that, the software “find my device” should be on all your devices; laptops, phones, tablets. Doing so will allow you to find your equipment within hours with the help of authorities.
First things first, your IT and cybersecurity teams should be different. An IT team may not be efficiently handled cybersecurity because, at the end of the day, they have different goals.
Train your staff in the following ways:
- Educate them on the Dangers
Almost 90 % of breaches are because of phishing attempts, so it is critical to train your employees about it. If the employees are not prepared to recognize phishing attempts, they won’t be able to prevent it. It usually comes from a trustworthy organization like a bank and tricks people into giving out sensitive information. So for any small to medium business, it’s crucial to be vigilant about educating employees on the dangers it possesses.
- Encourage Keeping Passwords Confidential
It is essential to take all security measures but equally necessary to create a security-conscious culture in your organization to avoid all threats. Password sharing seldom happens in organizations and can risk your data. Using strict protocols such as creating temporary passwords may also help secure the information.
- Restrict Admin Rights
The less access employees have to confidential data, the better. To minimize the risk of a breach, it is vital to give IT, and Admin rights to a handful of users as people can’t give away information they don’t know. Moreover, IT should be adequately trained in the storage of such information.
- Avoid Unsecure Websites
Do you know that ignorance of your employees on the threat of unsecured websites could cost you your business? All staff members should be taught about unsecured websites because it gives criminals access to all sensitive information stored in the device as well as passwords.
Even after all you have done to keep the breaches away, someone still manages to slip some information, it is crucial to have a disaster recovery plan in place. Even if you have experienced a cyber-attack, an effective response plan will pave the way for a swift reaction. Try to mitigate the risk as soon as possible and be proactive in your communication. There should be a clear protocol that outlines the role of each individual in the security team in case a breach happens.
- Insurance coverage
There are several insurances available now designed to address cybersecurity risks. It provides companies with protection against costs related to a data breach. It also provides access to skilled people to manage your threats throughout.
Keeping yourself safe requires the development of a foolproof security plan and plenty of diligence. If you are a small and medium business, you need to be vigilant about cybersecurity. Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are just as vulnerable as other businesses to cyber-attacks.
So, take these proactive steps and protect yourself against cybercriminals looking for the next target. Has your business ever faced a security breach? How did you tackle it? Have you set up a response plan now? Let us know!
Arslan Hassan is an electrical engineer with a passion for writing, designing, and anything tech-related. His educational background in the technical field has given him the edge to write on many topics. He occasionally writes blog articles for Shireen Inc.