Cyber Attacks: 5 Ways to protect your Small Business
When most people think about businesses falling victim to hacking attacks they usually assume it will be the big players such as banks, stock exchanges and utility companies. But while such reports may garner a lot of publicity, it is far more likely that smaller companies will be hacked well before the big industry leaders. Rather than picking a fight with the giants of the online world, it is far easier for criminals to attack more vulnerable soft targets where security is more lax and there is little risk of being detected.
No matter what size your business happens to be, there are still a number of ways to protect your interests from becoming another victim of a cyber attack.
- PASSWORD PROTOCOLS
To keep your business safe from harmful cyber attacks there ought to be strict procedures in place regarding the proper use of passwords. There also needs to be effective oversight and management of these procedures that ensures all protocols are being adhered to. Passwords that are shared between employees or left unchanged for weeks, months or even years are practically useless. Although it can seem like an inconvenience, all passwords must be changed regularly in order to effectively maintain the best small business protection possible.
- RESTRICT THE USE OF PORTABLE DRIVES
Do not allow employees to connect their own personal USB thumb drives or portable hard disk drives to your business network for any reason. It’s difficult enough to keep your own network safe and virus free, but near impossible to ensure that your employees adhere to similarly impeccable practices with their own devices.
- INSTALL ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE
Be sure to have antivirus scanning software installed on all your business computers. There are many budget priced, small business antivirus options that make protecting your assets relatively painless and inexpensive. Make sure that the installed software is always current and up to date. New viruses are being created every day and the only way to remain secure is to make downloading the latest antivirus security updates a routine practice.
We recommend that you give a try to Panda Small Business Protection. This tailor-made antivirus, designed by Panda Security, suits to your business needs: it’s economical, quick and compatible with any PC.
- DEDICATED SECURITY STAFF
Depending on the size of your business, employing a cyber security staff member could be a wise route to take. If budgets are limited then designating the most tech savvy person in the business with the role of network security may also be possible. There are numerous courses, seminars and conferences readily available that could help your tech employee become competent with a very short space of time.
- ONGOING EDUCATION AND REVIEWS
It is important to keep driving the security message home to your employees until it sticks. They may tire of hearing it but with so much at stake the need for vigilance cannot be reiterated strongly enough.
Security policies need to be checked and reviewed on a regular basis, especially if flaws arise and new vulnerabilities are identified. This could be as simple as noticing what employees are doing in terms of security or flagging it at team meetings to see if any new problems have been identified.
Taking a proactive approach by making security a priority in your business needn’t be complicated or expensive. The peace of mind it will provide by knowing your assets are protected is well worth implementing these simple, but effective measures.