Hacking has become a significant challenge for businesses. Even the biggest companies like Facebook have encountered several cybersecurity breaches in recent years. According to a report of Computerworld in 2011, ninety percent of businesses underwent at least one type of computer hacking in the year. Apart from that, different government agencies also report synonymous statistics that relay the rising cybersecurity-related issues.
Hackers typically get access to enterprises by exploiting security system flaws. Small firms frequently believe that hackers only target major corporations and do not spend heavily on protection. They do not put up much effort to protect themselves from hackers, and as a result, they get hacked. Therefore, whether you have a small business or run a multinational corporation, it is essential to take security measures to protect it from hackers.
Tips to Protect Your Business From Hackers
Here are some pointers that you should pursue to defend your business from hackers:
1. Hire Experts
To improve the possibility of thwarting an attack, employing an outside expert is a good idea. But it can be difficult for small businesses to manage budgets for such an expert. Hence, to curb their susceptibility to cyber security crimes, they can rely on internet-based data security vendors.
However, if your budget allows, it is recommended to hire someone well-versed in cybersecurity and has a degree in it. The reason is that cybersecurity is complex and sometimes beyond the scope of simple firewalls. In such cases, the expertise of a cybersecurity professional is necessary for resolving security issues. Northern Kentucky University (NKU) offers a Master of Science in Cybersecurity Online program. NKU is a well-known university that has been ranked by Forbes magazine among the top-ranked colleges in America for consecutive 11 years. A plus point of an MS cybersecurity degree from NKU is online. That means you can study cybersecurity in this top-rated university while sitting conveniently at home.
2. Use Appropriate Security Program
Always use up-to-date software. It is the first step towards securing the business. Constant software updates may annoy you, but you should not skip them anyway. While it is possible to utilize old software, doing so invites hackers.
The reason for using up-to-date software is that software developers augment the system’s security against the latest malware and adjust their coding. Hence, if you do not update it regularly, you threaten your business’s security.
3. Always have Antivirus and Antimalware Programs
Anti-virus and anti-malware software must be put on the system to secure your company from hackers. Programs like Intercept-X by Sophos can assist protect the firms against malicious ransomware attacks.
Another way to block malware is by keeping hardware and programs up to date, for instance: upgrading to newer routers and installing software updates. It will keep the system safe from malicious worms in obsolete devices and outdated software.
4. Communicate With Your Team
Talk about phishing attacks with your team. People learn from mistakes, and sometimes there is at least one compromised incident to teach about it. Create awareness regarding a phishing attack to prepare your team before any breach.
It will help if you tell your team about the consequences of such attacks. Tell them that these attacks destroy its reputation and put customers’ information at stake. Phishing sites maneuver by using similar domains that look like the popular sites your company may use. Ask your employees to use the vault programs to preserve complicated passwords and work only when the URL matches the stored URL. LastPass is an example of a vaulting program.
5. Build Strong Passwords
Most people do not consider it essential, even though it protects your business. Always create a password that has more than eight characters. Use a combination of both lower-case and upper-case letters along with symbols.
Consider changing your password once in a while. Try not to use the same password on several platforms. When there are multiple password setups, hackers will find it difficult to access all your devices or accounts.
Moreover, do not put the simple answers to security questions. For example, it is very convenient for hackers to find out about your father’s name or where you went to school. So try to think outside the box. Leave unusual or even bizarre answers to such questions to make it harder for hackers to interpret.
6. Confirm that Your Data is Secure and Encrypted
Hackers try to accomplish two things. First, they attempt to create chaos, and second, they steal money. Therefore, when your company’s data is unsecured, information like credit card accounts, bank routing digits, and employee social security numbers are like a feast for hackers.
Encrypt your data if it is not currently transmitted over the internet. Some tools provide full-disk encryption and come fundamental on almost every operating system. For instance, FileVault and BitLocker are the encryption tools on Macs and Windows PCs. It won’t take much time to activate these features.
It will encrypt every program and file on the drive. But there is one problem. The encryption pertains only when users are logged in to the system, so hackers can still attack through malware and viruses while the PC is running. Implementing this measure is a helpful notion of setting computers to log out automatically after 15 minutes.
7. Make Sure that the Network is Secure
An unsecured Wi-Fi network is an invitation for hackers. Hackers use the technique of wardriving which is quite powerful. They rig their cars with high-powered antennas and drive around checking out for poorly protected or unlocked networks.
If they discover a vulnerable target successfully, all the finance, passwords, and files are compromised, and people wonder what happened. The best solution for this is to rely on wired networks strictly. But do not think wired networks are versatile even if they are more secure. Suppose your company has to use a wireless network. In that case, it is essential to undermine the service set identifier (SSID), a publicizing function on the wireless router.
Your network will be concealed after this and hidden to occasional Wi-Fi snoops. Only the users with the exact network name will access it.
It is undeniable that no one can escape hacking; however, its risk can be reduced. Hackers would not let you know that they execute exceptionally complicated technical tasks concerning computers. Do not let hackers reach your business by vulnerabilities like weak passwords, poor document storage, and readily available records. To ensure secure record storage, take advantage of record scanning, cloud storage, physical document storage, and electronic document management system. Destroy your documents when the business no longer requires them. Educate your company employees about cyber fraud and take measures to respond to a startling security breach.
Founder Dinis Guarda
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