Information technology and broadband are significant drivers of productivity and efficiency growth for small firms as they expand into new markets. To counter the escalating cybersecurity risks, organizations must have a cybersecurity strategy in place to safeguard their own operations, their clients, and their data.
- 𝗧𝗿𝗮𝗶𝗻 𝗲𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗼𝘆𝗲𝗲𝘀 𝗶𝗻 𝘀𝗲𝗰𝘂𝗿𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗽𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗶𝗽𝗹𝗲𝘀
Establish fundamental cybersecurity procedures and regulations for staff members, such as mandating strong passwords, and acceptable Internet usage standards that spell out the consequences of breaking the organization’s cybersecurity rules. Create guidelines on how you manage and protect customer information and other important data.
- 𝗣𝗿𝗼𝘁𝗲𝗰𝘁 𝗶𝗻𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻, 𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗽𝘂𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘀, 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗻𝗲𝘁𝘄𝗼𝗿𝗸𝘀 𝗳𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝗰𝘆𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝗮𝘁𝘁𝗮𝗰𝗸𝘀
Maintain clean computers: The best defense against viruses, malware, and other online risks is to use the most recent versions of your operating system, web browser, and security software. A scan should be performed following each update of antivirus software. As soon as new updates for other crucial software become available, install them.
- 𝗣𝗿𝗼𝘃𝗶𝗱𝗲 𝗳𝗶𝗿𝗲𝘄𝗮𝗹𝗹 𝘀𝗲𝗰𝘂𝗿𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗜𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗿𝗻𝗲𝘁 𝗰𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗲𝗰𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻
A firewall is a group of connected programs that guard against unauthorized access to information on a private network. Check to see if the operating system’s firewall is activated, or install online-available, free firewall software. Make sure any home systems that employees use for work are firewall-protected
- 𝗖𝗿𝗲𝗮𝘁𝗲 𝗮 𝗺𝗼𝗯𝗶𝗹𝗲 𝗱𝗲𝘃𝗶𝗰𝗲 𝗮𝗰𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗻
Mobile devices can pose serious security and management difficulties, particularly if they contain sensitive data or have access to the company network. To stop thieves from stealing data while a phone is connected to a public network, mandate that users password-protect their devices, encrypt their data, and install security software. Establish reporting processes for equipment that has been lost or stolen.
- 𝗠𝗮𝗸𝗲 𝗯𝗮𝗰𝗸𝘂𝗽 𝗰𝗼𝗽𝗶𝗲𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝗶𝗺𝗽𝗼𝗿𝘁𝗮𝗻𝘁 𝗯𝘂𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝗱𝗮𝘁𝗮 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗶𝗻𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻
Make regular backups of all computer data. Word processing files, electronic spreadsheets, databases, financial files, human resources files, and accounts receivable/payable files are examples of critical data. Data should be automatically backed up, if at all possible, or at least once a week, and copies should be kept offsite or in the cloud.
- 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗼𝗹 𝗽𝗵𝘆𝘀𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹 𝗮𝗰𝗰𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝘁𝗼 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗽𝘂𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗰𝗿𝗲𝗮𝘁𝗲 𝘂𝘀𝗲𝗿 𝗮𝗰𝗰𝗼𝘂𝗻𝘁𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗲𝗮𝗰𝗵 𝗲𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗼𝘆𝗲𝗲
Prevent unauthorized users from accessing or using company computers. Locking up laptops when left unattended will prevent theft or loss since they are easy targets. Make sure each employee has their own user account, and insist on using strong passwords. Only important people and trusted IT staff should be granted administrative privileges.
- 𝗦𝗲𝗰𝘂𝗿𝗲 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗪𝗶-𝗙𝗶 𝗻𝗲𝘁𝘄𝗼𝗿𝗸𝘀
Make sure your office’s Wi-Fi network is hidden, encrypted, and secure if you have one. Set up your wireless access point or router so it does not broadcast the network name, sometimes referred to as the Service Set Identifier, in order to conceal your Wi-Fi network (SSID). Access to the router is secured by passwords.
- 𝗘𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗼𝘆 𝗯𝗲𝘀𝘁 𝗽𝗿𝗮𝗰𝘁𝗶𝗰𝗲𝘀 𝗼𝗻 𝗽𝗮𝘆𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀
Make use of the most reliable and verified tools and anti-fraud services by working with banks or processors. Additional security requirements may be imposed on you in accordance with contracts with your bank or processor. Use different computers to process payments and browse the Internet, and isolate payment systems from other, less secure programs.
- 𝗟𝗶𝗺𝗶𝘁 𝗲𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗼𝘆𝗲𝗲 𝗮𝗰𝗰𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝘁𝗼 𝗱𝗮𝘁𝗮 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗶𝗻𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻, 𝗹𝗶𝗺𝗶𝘁 𝗮𝘂𝘁𝗵𝗼𝗿𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝘁𝗼 𝗶𝗻𝘀𝘁𝗮𝗹𝗹 𝘀𝗼𝗳𝘁𝘄𝗮𝗿𝗲
Don’t let a single employee have access to all the data systems. Employees shouldn’t be allowed to install any software without permission, and they should only be granted access to the specific data systems that they require for their tasks.
- 𝗣𝗮𝘀𝘀𝘄𝗼𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗮𝘂𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗶𝗰𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻
Make it mandatory for employees to use special passwords and to update them every three months. Consider using multi-factor authentication, which requires more than just a password to obtain access. Determine whether your vendors who deal with sensitive data, particularly financial institutions, offer multi-factor authentication for your account by checking with them.