With the average security breach now costing nearly $4 million, there are losses to your reputation that a small business like yours might not weather. Small business cybersecurity is one of the most overlooked elements of building a small business but it’s nonetheless vital. If your business is subject to a damaged reputation while you’re still building your company, then you could end up handing your hard-earned customers to competitors.
Here are four tips for improving cybersecurity at your business.
1. Run a Password Clinic
One of the main defenses that you have at your workplace is the strength of your passwords. When you want to ensure that your employee and customer data is secured, you need to be sure that everything is password protected. While most people can come up with a password on their own, some people don’t realize the importance of good passwords.
For most of your employees, their passwords are more annoying than anything. However, they might be creating weak links in your company via their negligence.
Tell them the importance of having multiple passwords for multiple things. Having a unique password for every one of their logins ensures that they don’t end up losing all of their data following one breach.
Teach them some of the preferred methods for making passwords. There are a lot of tricks and hints but for a lot of people, just writing down passwords in a hidden notebook is actually a great way to save them. There are millions of hackers who could breach a network 24/7 while a notebook would have to be stolen by one person.
2. Secure Your Wi-Fi
Securing your Wi-Fi is a great way to ensure that you’re able to protect yourself from hacking. A network with no password could be tunneled into and information could be leeched out via a listening device or spyware.
Someone seated in your parking lot and connected to your Wi-Fi could hack into your company without you even knowing. If you leave your networks open, there’s no telling what you could lose.
One of the reasons this is so important is that there are often default logins saved on devices all around a company. If you have software from third parties, they often leave a few default logins around for people to get access to their settings. However, you need to ensure that all of these default logins are deleted and that your wi-fi is secured.
One listener planted on your server could result in millions of dollars of data lost. If someone gets access to logins, credentials, or private customer information, they could sell it to another company. Selling information is a major industry and people are willing to pay top dollar for information collected by other people.
Read more now on how to help your staff keep their browsing secure while they’re on your network.
3. Update Early and Often
If you want to ensure that your machines and servers are protected up at all times, then you need to make sure that your staff takes updates seriously. Small businesses are just as susceptible to a data breach as large businesses now that every business is using networked devices.
Updates are usually pushed on users because of small security issues and breaches. Often these code changes are sent to users of software before they’ve even heard of the breach that’s just been a blip on other developers’ radar. However, because these security breaches can quickly balloon into major issues, updates need to be adhered to.
Updates seem annoying for most users and there are lots of reasons why people don’t update their computers, updates need to be respected. A company goes through a lot of testing and feedback cycles before they release a new version of their software. If they’ve sent out an update, there’s a good reason.
Your staff might be reluctant to update as soon as they could because of incompatibility issues, but help to allay their fears by doing some research. Make sure they’ll still be able to use their favorite tools even after they update.
4. Have Some Off-Site Backup
While having a backup server is vital, most companies make the mistake of having all their data kept in one spot. If you’re not keeping your data backed up, you’re playing with fire.
In an age of climate crises and constant data breaching, if someone doesn’t hack into your server, then mother nature might. Having all of your data stored in one spot ensures that you’re open to any kind of physical breach. Even just leaving your servers in a single location means that someone who gets past security could end up breaking into your server room and planting a device.
While this might all seem like some dystopian sci-fi thing to you now, you never know what your competitors could try to take you out of business. With the right breach, they could get ahold of all of your customers and take you out of the running.
Keep your information backed up somewhere outside of your office. If you or your IT staff in that someone has gotten into your information, you can shut your whole system down and redirect to your offsite backup. Then you won’t have to worry about trying to isolate the hacker and root them out.
Small Business Cybersecurity is A Challenge
While small business cybersecurity is a challenge, it’s one that’s worth committing to in order to ensure that your hard-won customer data is protected. You worked hard to get your customers to trust you with their data and violating that trust could result in a loss that’s impossible to recover from.
To get more out of your office’s security, check out the latest in office communication.