Easy Ways To Protect Your Businesses’ Cybersecurity
It seems that with each passing day we become more and more dependent on technology to effectively run our businesses. From day to day operations to marketing, the internet is becoming essential to your small business’ ability to function. The internet and technology are great assets that allow us to increase productivity and reach customers we may never have contacted otherwise, but it still has it risks. The news is full of stories of data breaches and security risks these days. Keep reading for some easy to implement tips to help you protect both your business and your customers.
Keep Your Machines & Software Up-To-Date
Be sure to stay current with installing Windows and Mac OS system updates. Many of these releases include important security patches that are essential to minimizing your machine’s risk of attacks and vulnerabilities. Schedule a time that you check for and install updates on all your business’ machines to ensure the you are running the latest version of software available. Both Windows and Mac systems can be scheduled to do this automatically during the evening, so as not to tie up your machines during business hours. This same tip is also important for your virus protection and spyware software. Be sure to schedule regular times to both update your software and run system scans. Have your firewall turned on and always check attachments for viruses before downloading.
Password Protect Your WiFi
Set your router to hide and password protect your wireless network, to both prevent those outside your business from using your network and to protect your network from outside attacks. If your business is one that provides WiFi access to your customers as a courtesy, make it separate from the one you and your employees use. Don’t overlook this tip. Locking down your WiFi, not only prevents outsiders from slowing down your server and internet connection speeds, but also can protect your data. WiFi networks can be easily compromised, putting your information at risk, so be sure to use encryption and take the time choose the settings and precautions that best protect your data. Top Tip: Don’t forget your mobile users. Remind employees that work on the go of the risk of accessing sensitive information in pubic access areas such as coffee shops and libraries, where the risk of your data being compromised is at its highest.
Use & Encourage Use of Proper Passwords
Mismanagement and misuse of passwords are one of the number one ways that your company is placed at risk. Taking the time to create and encourage the use of proper passwords can help safeguard your company and your customer’s data. Make sure passwords are always complex and case sensitive - use a combination of upper & lower cases, numbers, and characters that are unique to every account and login. Do not use the same password for multiple accounts, and avoid using passwords that could be easily guessed by hackers (i.e. names & birthdates). Require users to regularly change their passwords, and always change passwords to necessary accounts, when an employee is let go or moves on from your company.
The internet and technology are both rewarding, vital assets to your small business, but they are not without their security risks. Taking the time to implement a few policies and procedures that minimize that risk and protect you and your customers is definitely worth the time and effort. For more helpful articles like these and ideas to improve your small business, keep reading our blog.
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