It is a common belief that big corporations and government agencies are at a greater risk of cyber attacks. However, in reality, around 43% of all cyber attacks target small businesses. This is because small businesses are more appealing to hackers as they are generally less-protected.
Small business owner are often unprepared for a cyber attack and hackers get an easy access to personal information such as credit card numbers, employee details, customer data, and vendor information. With increasing cases of cybercrime, it has become important to learn proper cybersecurity methods. Small businesses are more vulnerable to hacks because they do not have the know-how or the resources to implement great cybersecurity. Therefore, to make sure that your data remains secure, small business owners need to follow some network security tips.
1. Educate your employees
The biggest cause of data breach is often human error. Most of the time, hackers take advantage of mistakes of the company staff , such as not regularly updating passwords, leaving accounts open on shared computers, clicking or downloading malicious files, and getting trapped in phishing scams. The reason for such mistakes is lack of proper cybersecurity training.
Small businesses need to educate their employees about proper cybersecurity steps and on how to use company resources. In addition to this, penalties should be imposed for failing to follow security protocols.
2. Regularly update your software
Cybercriminals can easily hack older software versions because with time they identify all the loopholes of that version. For this reason, you should regularly update your computers, including desktops, laptops, and mobile devices.
If the small businesses want to protect their business against viruses, malware, and other forms of hacking, they must update their website content management system, financial or inventory-tracking software, anti-virus programs, or operating systems. Moreover, if software update is not available on your older model of hardware, it is necessary to change the model.
3. Secure Your WiFi
The business WiFi often gives an easy access of your data to hackers. Therefore, whatever is the size of your business, make sure to secure your Internet connection and use a firewall so that all your data that passes through the network is encrypted. It is important that only your employees have the access to your WiFi and try to hide your network so that others can’t access it. In case, your business requires an open WiFi for customers to use, always set up a separate network, so that your employees don’t use the public network.
4. Create Backups
Your data is precious and to protect it you need to think in advance. What if one day you find that all your valuable data is lost? Therefore, you need to regularly back up the information and important files so that in case something is stolen or goes missing, you have another copy somewhere else.
Small business owners need to back up word processing documents, all spreadsheets, human resources documents and files, databases, and any other documents that include important data. This way you can have information on your desktop, as well as, have a copy stored in the cloud or with the records management facility. Make sure all the copies are secured by using encryption and passwords.
To prevent data breach and protect your business from cyber criminals, find a consulting firms or IT specialists for enhanced IT services. They will offer better network security and wireless networking solutions, in addition to auditing your system to identify weaknesses.