Cyber Security Tips for Small Businesses
Turn on the news and its almost guaranteed that you will hear about the most recent hacking or cyber attack. Typically, however, the news only covers high profile companies, government entities and global businesses. Think this means your small or medium sized business is not at risk? Think again. Small and Medium sized businesses make for prime targets because they usually have the least protected websites- making a cyber attack a relatively easy job. The U.S. Small Business Association along with other security experts have compiled a great list of tips to consider when setting up your business’ cyber security solutions. Here is a synopsis of the top five steps you can take to secure your business:
- Train Employees on Security Protocols – Security protocols are great but they only work if every employee is on the same page. Have regular security meetings detailing appropriate Internet use guidelines, email use and password protection. Employees should only be given access to the specific data systems that they need for their jobs, and should not be able to install any software without permission.
- Back Up – Back Up – Back Up – Regularly backup the data on all computers. Have a plan that covers disaster recovery including how to keep your company running in the event of a cyber attack.
- Passwords – Practice secure passwords on all access points to your business. Require employees use strong passwords and change them often. This includes every employee. Also consider implementing multi-factor authentication that requires additional information beyond a password to gain entry. Check with your vendors that handle sensitive data, especially financial institutions, to see if they offer multi-factor authentication for your account.
- Secure your networks and WiFi – Safeguard your Internet connection by using a firewall and encrypting information. If you have a Wi-Fi network, make sure it is secure and hidden.
- Create a mobile device action plan – Mobile devices can create significant security and management challenges, especially if they hold confidential information or can access the corporate network. Require users to password protect their devices, encrypt their data, and install security apps to prevent criminals from stealing information while the phone is on public networks.