Is your small business under threat by online hackers? Do you think the data collected and stored by your business is susceptible to a cyberattack? If that’s the case then it’s high time you consider securing your small business by implementing a few important protective measures and cybersecurity tips.
Cyberattacks on small businesses have become quite prevalent. Almost every other IT company has been a victim of cyberattack one way or the other. Small businesses are more under threat because hackers can easily target them, given their lack of protective measures and fewer resources to manage the company’s data.
It is a common perception that most cyberattacks take place due to employee mistakes. Some employees consciously make the company’s data vulnerable to cyberattacks whereas others do it by committing a simple mistake. These mistakes can be avoided if employers regularly monitor employees in the workplace. That certainly doesn’t mean you can monitor them by learning how to find someone’s location by cell phone number.
By monitoring, we meant that employers should keep a check on all their employees’ activities including the tasks they perform, phone calls they make, text messages and emails they exchange, websites, and social media apps they browse during working hours.
Let’s not deviate from the main topic. Coming back to protecting the small business from external threats such as cybercriminals, we will discuss a few effective cybersecurity tips that can prevent your company from data breaches and major cyberattacks.
It would be wrong to assume that small businesses cannot be targeted by online hackers just because their company is too small and that hackers wouldn’t benefit much from them financially. However, it’s a completely wrong assumption because cyberattacks are increasingly taking place on small businesses and they are increasing day by day.
Small businesses should never take cybersecurity lightly. Once a cyberattack takes place successfully, it can prove catastrophic for the small business. To protect small businesses from becoming susceptible to cyberattacks, we have presented some effective cybersecurity tips that can be implemented by companies to enhance security.
Create Policies for Stronger Passwords and Login Credentials
Small businesses should make it a point to create and implement policies for strong and secure passwords. All devices and systems should use strong and unique passwords. All passwords should contain upper-case and lower-case letters, capitals, numbers, special characters, and should be at least 10 digits long.
Employers should teach employees how to create strong passwords and secure login credentials. Along with that, they should also teach them to enforce policies for strong passwords and login credentials. Employees can consider password managers to remember the passwords.
Install an Effective Firewall Solution
Installing an effective and robust firewall is another important cybersecurity tip that small businesses should consider. A firewall is a cybersecurity solution that prevents the small business network from the outside world and keeps cybercriminals from gaining access to the network as well as the stored data.
It is also noteworthy that not all firewalls are the same. If you want to use a robust firewall for your network then you need to spend some extra money on it. The good thing about installing a firewall in your business network is that you can also protect your remote workers through it.
Training for Security Awareness
It is important for employers to provide regular training for security awareness to their employees. This is the only way forward to create an environment of cybersecurity in the workplace. During the training sessions, employers should pay attention to important topics such as the creation and implementation of stronger, securer passwords, safe and responsible usage of the internet and devices, security basics, handling sensitive data, and security of mobile devices.
Employees should also be provided with training to avoid phishing attacks. They should also be encouraged to consider and practice phishing simulation exercises to check the effectiveness of the company’s training program.
Implement Multi-Factor Authentication
All small businesses must consider enabling multi-factor authentication. With the multi-factor authentication method enabled, companies can protect their accounts and devices with a password and at least one more method of authentication. In case an employee’s login credentials are compromised, they can recover their account and gain access to it by using the two-factor or multi-factor authentication. They can gain access to their account by receiving a text message on their cell number or an email on their email address.
Create a Backup Policy
Another important cybersecurity tip is to create a good backup policy for your company’s private and sensitive data. If your company’s data is hacked with an enormous cyberattack, you need to be in a position to recover important data. That can only be possible if you have created backups of your data. Be sure to test the backups to ensure you can actually recover the lost data. It would be imprudent to wait until a cyberattack takes place to test whether or not you can recover your lost data through backups. The best strategy would be following the 3-2-1 approach. This means a company should keep three backup copies, on two different types of media, with one copy securely stored somewhere offsite.
Timely Update Software
It is normal for computer software to come up with errors, bugs, and vulnerabilities. Software and mobile apps keep on sending patches to fix those bugs and patches regularly. Employers shouldn’t let employees take responsibility for timely updating the software they’re using. Most employees tend to ignore the updates and fail to apply them promptly. These updates need to be applied as soon as they are available because only then they can stay up to date.
It is better to schedule the updates for the software after the working hours end. Do not leave it to your employees to update the software. Rather, take this job into your hands and make sure all devices and software are timely updated manually if not automatically.
Install Employee Monitoring Solutions
Like we mentioned earlier in the discussion, most companies are vulnerable to cyberattacks because of employee mistakes. If you want to make sure your employee does not commit any mistake and stays true to your business and their job, you need to install employee monitoring software on their device.
For example, you can deploy a phone spy app on their company-owned smartphone and remotely monitor all the activities taking place on their device. Employee monitoring helps small businesses keep a check on their employees and prevent the company’s data from data breaches and cyberattacks.
Secure Internet and WIFI Connections
All small businesses are using the internet and WIFI connections to stay connected to the world of the internet. For that, they require internet or WIFI networks in the workplace. Employers should make sure that all the WIFI and internet connections are secured and protected. Be sure to change the default passwords. Also, do not let anyone from outside the network access your internet router.