Keep your small business secure

Small businesses are usually not considered as subjects to hackers’ attacks but that is not in fact the case. On the contrary, their cyber threats are not so small as may seem to be. Just look at the statistics: 43% of data breaches fall on small companies.

Anytime a small business can fall victim to hackers or ransomware or malware attacks and lose valuable data. This happens because cyber criminals are always well-informed about inexpensive, obsolete and inefficient security tools small businesses use. Another soft spot of many small businesses is poorly educated staff with low level of knowledge of cyber security issues.

However, it is cyber security that must be at the forefront of priorities for your organization. If you are a small business owner follow some simple but effective steps to minimize the risk of malware, ransomware and avoid being hacked.

Passwords

We often hear it said that passwords must be strong. Passwords like ABC or 321 are a cakewalk even for inexperienced hackers. So set up a strong and reliable password consisting of numbers, letters and characters. Recall your employees the importance of having strong passwords as guarantor of solid security.

Besides, it is crucial to restrict the number of password attempts at all stages of authorization process. There is a great number of password cracking solutions which can break your passwords in second so limiting the number of attempts is as important as adding a secure password.

Also, if you want all your passwords stored in one place, choose a password manager wisely. Such tool creates reliable passwords and remembers them for you. But you should bear in mind that if all your passwords are kept in one database, cyber criminals can easily get them all at once.

On-Screen Keyboards

Modern hackers’ technologies are developing rapidly. So it wouldn’t be a problem for them to record your keystrokes using keylogging software. It is particularly easy when you are using shared networks. To avoid your data leakage use virtual or on-screen keyboards. Even the most advanced keylogging software can’t identify the information if it is entered on screen keyboard by mouse clicks. A large number of financial institutions use virtual keyboards obligatory.

Backups

Data backups play a major role in effective information security. However, poor management and mishandling of backups can make them subjects to cyber attacks. Cloud storages, for example, store your data at a remote location and the slightest negligence could cost you a fortune. Before storing your data on the cloud or remote server, encrypt and password-protect all files and documents. This is the only way you can feel confident that you have an extra layer of protection for your remotely stored documents.

Constant training

Regular employees’ education is the basis of reliable cyber security. It’s better sooner than later so start frequent trainings before you have data breach. Train all your staff from average employees to top management on a regular basis. Talk to your employees about cyber security various aspects and test their knowledge.

Don’t store CVV numbers

If you don’t want your customers’ data be exposed to the cyber criminals, get and store all credit card information without keeping the CCV number. It is an optimal solution as customers won’t feel bothered to enter this number during transaction and know their credit card information is safe as well.

No outsider or unauthorized access to your systems

You should control access to your internal systems or network components. If necessary to provide an access to your systems to third-party technicians, supervise them while they are working. Always lock your computers up after leaving them and ask your employees to do the same.

Regular software updating

When you got a notification that you should update your software, never ignore it. Software upgrading is one of the first steps in proper computer security. Otherwise, your computer is constantly threatened by malware, ransomware and hackers’ attacks. Usually, software vendors release updates to prevent security risks and improve data security of their products. Such updates usually contain different fixes and new features as well as various improvements.

Finally, make your networks secure which means hide and secure your Wi-Fi networks in order to avoid the unauthorized access from the outside. Moreover encrypt your wireless access point and hide Service Set Identifier available in wireless access point and router.

Don’t let hackers harm the reputation of your small business, steal your sensitive data and your money!

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