65% of small businesses fail to act in the wake of a cyber security incident. Those who don’t protect themselves are likely to go out of business within six months, so it’s vital that you improve cybersecurity in yours.
Having an antivirus isn't enough. Some cybercriminals target employees directly, trying to phish their passwords and socially engineer information out of them. Even your accounts are at risk if someone manages to brute-force their way in through a weak password.
No matter how big or small your business is, you should do everything you can to avoid a cyber attack. One can damage your files, steal valuable information, and cost your business a ton of time and money. Here's how to improve cybersecurity in your business.
Use Endpoint Security Software
It's crucial to have security software running on every computer in your business. You need to ensure that no customers accidentally install viruses and also protect your network.
While an antivirus suite and firewall can go some way to protecting you, businesses need to go a step further for optimal security.
Endpoint Security Software can seal up all those security holes that are left behind. Not only can these systems act as firewalls and anti-malware tools, but they can also detect hacking attempts and patch up vulnerable software.
Generally, these will cost you a lot more than your regular security suite. However, it's a price worth paying for business safety and peace-of-mind.
Block Bad URLs
Most cybersecurity attacks happen via the web. If an employee opens a legitimate-looking email with a supposedly important link, they might end up downloading spyware on the system.
Phishing attacks are also incredibly common. These are links leading to sites mimicking PayPal, Google, and other sites, encouraging people to enter their passwords so hackers can steal them.
Blocking short URLs like bit.ly, tinyurl.com, and t.co is an excellent step to improve cybersecurity. These are often used to lead to harmful links. You should also block any fishy websites or emails sent to you or your employees.
Increase Password Strength
Most websites ask you to enter a strong password for a good reason. Cybercriminals often try to break into important business accounts simply by guessing the password. What's more, they can even use software to guess a vast series of password strings for them automatically.
A long password with capitals, lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols is the best way to go. You should also encourage your employees and even customers to put this into practice with all their business-related accounts.
Of course, you still need to be able to remember your password. But the more complex, the better.
Backup With Physical Data and Cloud Storage
A common cyber attack involves invading your business data through a virus. That can corrupt and invalidate all of your files and them impossible to access or recover unless you pay the hacker a ransom fee.
That's why backups are vital in business. Many companies today use secure cloud storage. When you make automated backups straight to the internet, even if your network gets hacked, you can reset the whole system and get your files back.
Physical backups also help. Routinely backing up valuable data to an external hard drive is a smart idea. If anyone manages to hack your network, they won't be able to access your external physical storage. You should keep this safe and consider encrypting it.
Implement Access Management
There are individual files you don't want just anyone to see. Some businesses even have agents collect data for them by acting as employees for rivals. That's why access management is essential for cybersecurity.
You can use access management software to limit the access of every employee on your network. Protect critical business files from regular employees and only give them access to what they need.
Secure Your Business WiFi
Hackers often execute attacks by gaining access to your business network's WiFi. Make sure you secure this.
Using WEP2 encryption, requiring a strong password, and masking your SSID name can all help avoid WiFi attacks.
Although businesses like bars and stores often offer customer WiFi, it's better to keep this on a separate network or router. That way, hackers won't be able to access the same WiFi you and your employees are on.
A lot of viruses and cyber attacks target outdated, vulnerable software. If you don't pay notice, you might have exploitable software still running on your business computers.
Make sure your IT team carries out regular updates on everything. Drivers, software, and your security system should all be updated as often as possible.
You might want to set up automated updates every day before work hours. That way, you can keep everything safe without reducing business productivity.
Educate Your Employees
A lot of the time, your business can be left vulnerable purely by employee ignorance. If someone in your business clicks a bad link or sends information to the wrong person, it can bring the entire company down.
You can't blame an employee if they don't know what to look out for. However, you can prevent it by giving everyone in your company regular notices on security.
Employee training should involve cybersecurity education. You can also address security protocols in business meetings. If a new cyber attack has come up and your business may be at risk, send a quick email to everyone in your company to keep them notified.
With the prevalence of cyber attacks against businesses these days, it's essential to know how to improve cybersecurity in your business. All of these tips will help you shore up possible security breaches and keep your company safe.
Make sure you always keep your staff in-the-know on cybersecurity. Educating your workforce can protect you from some of the most common attacks. It can also help to have a dedicated security professional on your IT team to help you prevent any attacks.