How to Protect your Company Online

The workplace is rapidly changing, and more and more businesses are utilizing online platforms to run their companies. Couple that with many companies now allowing or requiring their employees to work remotely, and you have the perfect storm when it comes to cyber security.

Cyber Security is simply the practice of keeping your online systems safe. Every company who uses an online platform in any way needs to be on top of their cyber security to avoid breaches that can detrimental to their business. Because of the culture of our business practices, cyber security growth is at an all-time high and will continue to rise in the coming years.

Steps to Keep You Safe

There are a lot of simple things a company needs to do to make sure they are protected online. Especially in the healthcare, financial and government sectors, securing your internet is essential. The foundation to security is built in a handful of simple steps.

  • Using a secure hosting site
  • Keeping all software up to date
  • Backup all files frequently, at least once per day
  • Recommend strong and complex passwords for all employees

These are just the minor things that need done across every company. Each business should have someone on their team designated to cyber security. For the smaller businesses who maybe can’t employ someone in that specific role, they should consider outsourcing their IT so that they remain as locked down as possible.

Email as a Downfall

Everyone relies on email as the fasted way to communicate in our world today. Unfortunately, though, email is usually the easiest way to start a cyber breach. One click on an unknown link can give a skilled hacker access to your computer. While your computer itself may not hold all of the company information, it is a direct gateway into the computer system.

When employers say never open an email form someone you don’t know or trust, this is exactly what they are trying to avoid. Many email hackers use ransomware as an attack on the business. While they aren’t necessarily stealing your data for use, they are holding it and demanding money in exchange for the return of your server’s function. These amounts are usually very high, and they want paid in bitcoin or other online payment currencies. Although less severe for your clients, this is a quick way to bankrupt a business.

Securing Your Wireless Network

If you’ve gone into a business lately, it is very likely that they offer free high-speed internet while you wait or shop. So, if this is the case, how can you be sure the company’s wireless network is secure? The simple truth is these are guest networks where they are complimentary to the public but have no access inside of the business’s systems.

Many times, the business has a restricted corporate network that is password protected where the data is stored. It is important, though, that this network remains secure and is unable to be easily breeched. Remember, bad guys are usually just as smart as good guys, and often times even smarter, so using a password that is randomly generated is an easy way to ensure no one can access the system.

Avoiding the Data Breech

A large data breech can be extremely detrimental to any company. Look at how many major stores and even credit card companies have had their information stolen. For the consumer it means a lot of headaches trying to replace credit cards and securing their information, but for the company it can mean millions of dollars.

When you have a large data breech, it has to be reported so that the consumers know that their information was stolen. That in and of itself is likely to cause a decline in revenue as customers are going to be wary of using those services for a while. Couple that with now having to offer credit monitoring with everyone who could have possibly been affected by the breech and you are talking serious dollars.

Outside of the consumer/store relationship is the investors that hold stock in the company. With a data breech, shares are likely to fall, leaving investors to make hard decisions to continue their investments or to pull out.

One big data breech could ruin a company who is already struggling to survive in today’s business world.

Keeping You Safe

The name of the game in cyber security is protecting your business. Investing in quality cyber security is essential in keeping your business alive and thriving. Educating your staff on how to conduct themselves online when it comes to opening emails, especially with attachments, and creating strong, not easily guessed passwords can be the difference between a successful company and a bankrupt one.

A strong IT manager is only the beginning. Protecting your company online needs to be a whole-team approach to ensure your business is as locked down online as possible.

 

 

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