Cyber Security Month is here and we’re kicking off with some simple tips that you can follow in order to protect your business online.
It’s easy to think that because you’re a small to medium sized business, you’re safe from cybercriminals as they only target large corporations. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth – any business, any size is a target, no one is safe.
If you haven’t put in place safeguarding procedures to shield your business online, continue reading this blog for tips on how to protect yourself, your employees, your customers and most importantly, your business from cyber-attacks and breaches.
Back it up – don’t risk losing it all
You’ve probably heard this before, it’s one of the best and easiest defence methods to implement, there really is no excuse not to be running a regular back up function, it is essential. Cyber criminals manufacturer powerful ransomware and infiltrate it into company networks – this means that not only have they gained access to your IT systems, they now have the power to lock you out and demand money from you. Backing up your data frequently means that if the worst does happen you can restore the last backup and get your business back up and running quickly, without having to cough up cash to hackers.
Security updates, patches and anti-virus
Is your operating software up to date? If you’re unsure then we highly suggest that you check asap. Updating your operating software is a key part of your overall network security along with a robust firewall, anti-virus, spyware and malware protection.
Failing to frequently update your operating systems leaves you at greater risk of a cyber-attack.
*UPDATE ALL SYSTEMS RIGHT NOW*.
Following on from the above point, a firewall is an essential barrier that sits between your devices and the internet or other external sources of data. They form a vital part of your IT systems, overseeing the safety of outgoing and incoming network traffic. Ensuring your firewall is up-to-date and working properly is another simple step to help protect your online presence. You don’t need to know the details as to how it works, just be satisfied you have a robust firewall in place and that it is being monitored.
How often do you receive a spammy-looking email? One of the most common types of security breaches are via emails containing malware. Once opened your systems could become riddled with viruses, data-stealing software or even spyware. Educate your employees on the dangers of hoax emails and be mindful when opening new emails that look mis-leading. Hackers are becoming increasingly sophisticated and the nature of the emails that they send look less and less spammy so make sure you pay close attention.
Two step authentication:
For that extra level of security – download a two-step authentication app. Two factor or multi-way authentications typically require the confirmation of the ‘username and password’ along with added authentications such as: confirming an authorisation code sent to the account holder via email or text, or to answer a security question chosen by the account holder. Other methods include fingerprint and facial recognition. Set these up and you’re one step ahead of any hacker.
Set permissions and limit access
You should restrict and limit access to within your IT systems – not every employee will need access to every file. By allowing anyone to access personal information or accounts you’re opening yourself up as an easy target. Consider what access or information each of your employee’s need for their role and give them the relevant permissions. First, restrict employee permissions and secondly limit access. This will help to protect your business against unauthorised access to company devices, accounts and data, and ultimately a security breach.