As a small business owner, you may believe that you don’t have the tools necessary to protect your corporate data, or you may think that your company is too small of a fish to become a target, but, in reality, both statements are false. Cybercriminals make it a point to target small businesses because of that lack of protection. However, even if you don’t have the same tools as the major corporations, you can reduce the risks by educating your team, reviewing your business, and using common-sense security to protect your data.
Below, we will talk about how you can work with your teams and use several outside sources in order to keep your business secure and mitigate the advancing data security risks that we face today.
Additional Training Is Key
If you want to eliminate the possibility of a data breach, then you need to start from the inside and train your team about potential threats and the tactics that they can use to protect your company.
For instance, even as technology evolves, hackers are still using the same methods that have worked for years, including phishing scams. Advise your teams that these scams can come via email or text, and if they click the link that the hackers provide, then the criminal will have an open door that they can use to access and move about your system.
You should also tell your team about ransomware, which is when a hacker installs malware that gives them control of your computer. Once they do, they can lock you out until you pay a fee. Teach your teams that they can avoid this costly breach by blocking any unwanted attachments that come through their email and by backing up their data so they can access it even if a hacker has control of the main system.
As time goes on and we start to work in new ways, hackers also evolve and find new methods of attack. For instance, many people are working remotely these days, and when they work out of public places like a coffee shop or restaurant and they connect to public Wi-Fi, they may mistakenly fall for a man-in-the-middle attack. That is where a hacker sets up a fake network that looks like the real deal or is advertised as free, so we will fall for the trap. However, if you connect with your phone, then the hacker can gain full access to your system.
Tactics If You Don’t Know A Lot About Cybersecurity
As you can see, there are a lot of new and existing threats that can cause major issues for your company. If you are an owner that is not well-versed on the subject, then you may want to reach out for help.
One way that you can do that is by having a professional come to your company and perform a cybersecurity audit. Essentially, this is when the expert will take a close look at every system and device that you have in place as they determine if it is safe or vulnerable to attack. If your network is at risk, then the expert will give you advice on how to fix the issue so you can be sure that you are protected.
If you want a more hands-off approach to cybersecurity, then consider uploading your data and programs to the cloud. There are many cloud companies in existence, and they can offer a plethora of benefits to your business. For instance, when your data is on the cloud, it essentially means that you can operate from anywhere and still have access to your work. Plus, by having your teams log onto cloud software, you also eliminate the need to buy and store bulky computers at your physical office.
One of the best benefits of a cloud company is the fact that your information will be stored in a large data centre that is monitored by an in-house security team. This security team is well versed in all advancing threats, and they monitor your data 24 hours a day. If a potential breach does occur, they can stop it on the spot. That kind of around-the-clock protection should help you to get better sleep at night.
Protecting Confidential Information
While the time spent restoring and patching your systems after a data breach is a pain, the real issues begin when your customers find out. Customers trust that your organization will protect their data, and if you break that trust, then they may take their business elsewhere, and you could lose money. Even worse, if hackers are able to steal any of your proprietary information and trade secrets, then they could sell them to the highest bidder, and your organization could be in hot water.
It is essential that you take every precaution to protect your proprietary information, which you can do by asking your team to complete non-compete agreements, ensuring that you only give secrets to people within your organization that need to know, and putting the proper cybersecurity tactics in place. Double up when you can. Add a smart password with a complicated combination of letters, numbers, and special characters, and then pair that with a form of two-factor authentication, like a biometric eye scan.
There is always the chance that an employee who has sensitive information may leave the company, and even if you think you trust that individual, there is always the chance that they could log into the system after the fact and try to steal information or manipulate your files. You can be proactive by putting protocols in place when an employee leaves, which might include collecting their company-issued work devices or shutting down their access, so they cannot log in even if they try. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
As you can see, there are many tactics that small business leaders can try to mitigate and eliminate advancing security risks. Consider these tactics to grow your company with confidence.