A growing number of businesses have moved or increased their operations online over the past few years. While this has boosted remote and hybrid work opportunities and proven to be an agile advantage, it’s also raised concerns regarding cyber security. The data your company uses and works with is valuable to hackers looking to get something out of it beyond intended purposes.
Education around security and awareness of potential threats on mobile and desktop devices is more common than ever. However, as tactics become more well-known, more complex scams and security threats emerge. There are plenty of areas where these individuals can access your system and use it to their advantage. In this post, we’ll discuss a bit more about cyber security and our top nine tips on how to protect your business and educate your employees.
- 1 What Is Cyber Security?
- 2 Why Is Cyber Security Important?
- 3 Tips To Help Your Business Remain Secure
- 4 Working with RevNet
What Is Cyber Security?
This term refers to the protection of your company’s computer systems, networks, and data from unauthorized users attempting to access this information. A business operating online in any capacity should have some form of IT security and the space to scale these safeguards as needed.
Why Is Cyber Security Important?
The data available online is extensive. Although not everyone is a computer whiz, there are many bad actors dedicated to the demise of companies and individuals who seek to infiltrate cybersecurity systems and employ malware or other concerns. They are experts in devising ways to access information that is inaccessible to them and using it in a malicious way. An example could be ransomware, where hackers demand money in exchange for releasing their hold on a computer system, threatening to publish this data on the internet.
Cyber security acts as the tall, impenetrable wall surrounding your company’s digital systems, constantly blocking attempts to penetrate or gain access. This wall can involve a few different components and may be thicker in some areas than others. It stands to reason that the more features it has, the more robust it will be.
Tips To Help Your Business Remain Secure
Below, we’ve put together some general information on tips that will help you and your employees take advantage of cybersecurity best practices. Malware, including ransomware, viruses, trojans, bots, and spyware, has become more polished over time. These tips are simply outlines for protection and should be customized based on your industry and the scale of your organization.
Update Your Software
The tools and resources you use to complete your day-to-day operations constantly undergo review from their respective companies. The sophistication of this software needs to be reevaluated frequently to remove bugs and fix potential issues before they bog down the system.
In addition, the updates are a way to ensure full functionality and compatibility within your processes. They might add a new line of code to protect from hackers or tie a loose end that was an open door to a malicious actor.
Use a Password Management System
Writing passwords down on paper and keeping them by your desk, or storing them somewhere on your computer that is easily accessible, is a considerable danger to the security of your system.
The right credentials in the wrong hands could quickly undermine your operations at the logins of your users. A password management system is a computer program used for the safe storage of credentials for apps and websites. It can also suggest stronger passwords for users and have fill options so users can move between apps seamlessly.
Sometimes, the ability to input a password isn’t enough. The heightened security measures of two-factor authentication require users to present two components of evidence that they are the correct person who should be accessing this data. Google Authenticator is a prime example, where users input their credentials and then must access a one-time code through the app to verify their identity. These codes reset every few seconds to ensure optimal security.
This stops password guessers in their tracks because they often don’t have access to the second level of authentication.
Implement Anti-Virus Protection
Used as one of the first lines of defence for your organization’s data and information, this protection scans all aspects of your database for harmful virus software. Items downloaded from the internet can come laden with undetectable malware until it has infiltrated your system. An antivirus program can stop and remove these sources swiftly and perform other actionable tasks that can help improve the functionality and security of your system.
Educate About and Be Aware of Phishing
Phishing is described as a hacker sending a fraudulent message that appears real to get the receiver to divulge information, click on a link, or download an attachment. Often these come in the form of emails, but can also be text messages, referred to as smishing. While these messages have been particularly obvious in the past, hackers have figured out what people look for and adjusted their tactics accordingly.
Having an education module in place that describes and uses examples of what to look out for can curb the potential for your employees to get caught in phishing. Although any emails or texts from these senders should be ignored, some might see a familiar logo or address and think they are legitimate. You may want to have a report option through your IT service provider to look out for especially common and hard-to-detect phishing scams.
Consider What You Click
Not every link on the internet is safe to click. Even a simple Google search could show results that take you to a suspicious website or one filled with dangerous pop-ups. Be conscious of what you click, ensure that URLs are spelled correctly, and take your time looking for web page information.
Accidental clicking of ads or other aspects of a spammy website could lead your users to cause security breaches or download malware that could be difficult to detect or eliminate.
In the event that a hacker has access to your data, you’ll likely have to destroy the port they came in through and cut off their access. During this wipe, you’ll also lose considerable information from the device. Backed-up data means you won’t lose years of projects or work.
Storing data elsewhere also means you can remove it from its immediate presence on your device. Thus, even if a bad actor gains access to your credentials, they won’t be able to disarm your system or find the details they need to further their malicious activity.
Don’t Forget About Mobile Devices
Whether your company provides business phones or staff has access to certain aspects of work from their own mobile devices, these holes in your cybersecurity plan can be gaping. Employ mobile device management (MDM) where possible, and limit the data available for access outside work devices. Smishing might be more common if hackers get ahold of your work number, so know where to report these messages and avoid storing any personal information that a bad actor could use to further their exploitation.
Avoid Connecting to Public Wi-Fi
Although convenient, public Wi-Fi can store and misappropriate data for anyone who connects to it. The network is not secure and, as a result, may leak details of intimate business deals while you are using it. A mobile internet stick can provide you with a safe connection if you are on the go. Otherwise, ensure that staff are aware to only work on secure networks that they know and trust and, if they connect to public Wi-Fi, that they are not working on anything particularly sensitive.
Working with RevNet
Managed IT services and security is a crucial technique in your fight against potential pitfalls regarding your organization’s cyber security. At Revolution Networks, we are capable of covering your company from all angles. Our options include remote backups and anti-virus services. We also offer consulting services for those looking to boost their IT solutions and for a full overview of their current processes and systems.
Our support is available by telephone, remotely, or through extended services. It can be difficult to navigate the complexities of ensuring your business is as cyber-secure as you need and want it to be. We’re here to help. Contact us today to get started.