As technology-based threats become more common and complex, security solutions that were once touted as the best no longer do a lot of good. Business owners should especially be aware of how easy it is to continue security practices that no longer offer the protection they need. Which former recommendations are now considered bad cybersecurity practices?
Ineffective Cybersecurity Methods
An uncomfortably long list of formerly reliable cybersecurity measures no longer work as advertised. Even more modern solutions require more attention and care than many businesses give them. How many of these questionable security solutions are you still using?
- Default email security
- Insufficient or nonexistent disaster plans
- Poor authentication methods
- Too many wifi-enabled devices
- Outdated devices or systems
- Blindly trusting every person or device
- Ignoring firewall protection
1) Default Email Security
Whatever email provider your business uses likely has a built-in security system already. However, these default security structures are very basic and very easy to breach. Never assume that your provider’s security system is sufficient on its own. You likely aren’t getting all the protection your business requires.
2) Insufficient or Nonexistent Disaster Plans
Some business owners are so confident in their preventive security measures that making a backup plan seems unnecessary. On the other hand, business owners may not think they have anything worth stealing and thus don’t bother to back up their data. Both are terrible ideas! Even if you have the best security system in the world, it’s not perfect. Take the time to develop a data backup and disaster recovery plan to get back on your feet quickly after a cyberattack.
3) Poor Authentication Methods
A username and password is the most common way to log in to an account or device. However, it’s far from the most secure way. It’s far more secure to use two-factor (or multi-factor) authentication to judge that a user is truly who they say they are. Remember, it’s easy to steal or deduce a username-password combination. It’s far more difficult to answer a tough security question or fake a randomly-generated access code.
4) Too Many Wifi-Enabled Devices
Every device that connects to the internet has the potential to be hacked–even something like a smart coffee machine could be vulnerable if the wifi network is compromised. And each wifi-connected device is another potential entry point for hackers. Of course, modern business relies on the internet, so you can’t get rid of all your electronics to stay safe. But it’s time to examine which devices you truly need and replace any that are redundant or present a bigger risk than they’re worth.
Pro Tip: How secure is your business wifi network? Secure devices connected to a vulnerable wifi signal are still exposed to online risks.
5) Outdated Devices or Systems
There isn’t always a need to urgently upgrade to every newest form of technology. However, it’s equally counterintuitive to stubbornly cling to older, outdated technology when a new and improved version has been available for years. This is especially true when it comes to security measures. Each upgrade is designed to improve the device or software that you use. If you continually ignore these upgrades, you may find yourself with a vulnerable system that the manufacturer may no longer support. Consider upgrading to newer, more secure versions of your work hardware and software.
6) Blindly Trusting Every Person or Device
Not every device that tries to access your network is trustworthy. If you set up a policy of approving virtually anyone who requests access, you leave the door wide open for hackers to access your data. Don’t let that happen! Even if you use a bring-your-own-device system at work and need to approve a variety of different computers or phones, take the time to verify every single device and user. Don’t leave any vulnerabilities.
7) Ignoring Firewall Protection
Firewalls are excellent methods of cybersecurity, but this protection deteriorates over time as more and more users and devices need permission to use your network. Each granting of access creates a hole in the firewall, and as time passes, those holes build up. This only gets worse as staff members leave and are replaced. Unless their firewall access is revoked and the hole is sealed, that access point is still open and leaves you vulnerable to cyberattacks. Even if you trust former employees not to abuse ongoing access, what if their device is infected and the virus spreads to your system that way? It’s simply not worth the risk.
Protect Your Business from Modern Cybersecurity Threats
While any type of security system is imperfect, some are still demonstrably superior to others. And as both technology and cyber threats continue to evolve, the once-superior systems will eventually no longer offer the necessary protection and need to be replaced. As a business owner, it’s your job to find the best solution for your team and avoid employing bad cybersecurity solutions.
Connect with us for more information on protecting your business from data breaches and other online threats.