Individuals, corporations, and small businesses are all vulnerable to cyber attacks. Malware and hacking have evolved along with technology, forcing security to race to keep up. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to protect yourself and your sensitive information.
Keeping Your Business Safe
Cyber criminals are smart. Security systems will help immensely, but without additional care and action from you, your information could still be compromised. Keep these security tips in mind to protect your business from malware or theft:
- Change all usernames and passwords periodically
- Use a firewall
- Test for vulnerable points
- Invest in managed security services
1) Change All Usernames and Passwords Periodically
Most business security experts recommend changing your passwords approximately every 90 days. If possible, go the extra step to change your username as well. But beyond simply changing the password, make the change significant enough that no one could guess the new password based on the old one. For instance, if your old password is “pinkdiamond444”, your new password shouldn’t be “pinkdiamond443” or only contain some other tiny change. Reword your entire password and consider choosing an entirely different theme to throw off any guesses based on your old password. And above all, if you keep track of your passwords in writing, make sure that’s secure too!
2) Use a Firewall
A firewall is absolutely crucial for protecting your personal information, including payment information for the money your business handles. Not only will a strong firewall block malware from being installed, but it will also shut down massive unauthorized data transfers. Hackers can attack you from anywhere on Earth–use a quality firewall to keep them out!
Pro Tip: Set up a separate network to handle payments and any money transfers for your business. This restricts access to only a few people and makes your system less vulnerable to outside attacks.
3) Test for Vulnerable Points
A potential security breach may not make itself obvious until the worst has already happened. To avoid this, have an IT expert run a security test that specifically searches for weak spots and shows you how to correct the problem. This allows you to identify vulnerabilities and deal with them before something goes very wrong.
Additionally, test your employees periodically. Perform regular security checks or send out fake phishing emails. Make sure everyone knows the proper way to handle attempted (or partially successful) security breaches.
4) Invest in Managed Security Services
An all-encompassing managed security service will monitor your entire network 24/7, blocking threats and alerting you to any weak points that need addressing. This detailed service will keep you compliant with privacy laws and ensure that only authorized users access your information. Take advantage of this professional way to keep your business safe!
Protection for You and Your Clients
As a small business owner, you can’t afford to cut corners on security protection. Not only will a vulnerable system compromise your own sensitive information, but your customers’ data will also be at risk. A data breach hurts your pocketbook and your clients’ trust in you. By keeping these online security tips in mind and protecting your business’s systems, you can greatly reduce your vulnerability to cyber attacks.
Join the conversation to learn how other business owners secured their systems against advanced malware.