Most business startups do not prioritize cybersecurity. Because of this, a large number of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are susceptible to security issues such as malware, phishing, data breaches, and so on.
Research shows that at least 71% of small businesses got attacked by ransomware in 2018. A telemarketing firm, The Heritage Company, which had operated for over 6 decades, has closed down following a ransomware attack. The company which had its data held for ransom by hackers paid the ransom and was still unable to revive its systems.
Protecting your Firm in a Better Way
This and several other instances spell out the ruthlessness with which these cybercriminals operate. Not implementing security protocols makes your firm a probable victim. To avoid this, you’ll need to adopt some cybersecurity practices. The points listed here are custom-made for business owners and managers that are not familiar with the technical details of cybersecurity.
Cybersecurity Practices for Small and Medium-Sized Firms
1. Secure all Passcodes
The simplest way for a rookie without any hacking experience to breach your system is by having your password. Using a short, easy-to-guess password is a surefire way to get your accounts hacked. What’s worse, if you use the same password across all company systems and accounts, your firm would be in very serious trouble.
The first step to securing passcodes is to use a strong password consisting of symbols, numbers, lower and uppercase letters. Also, your password has to be at least 10 characters long.
To further strengthen your passwords, you can change them periodically. Never write passwords on a note for everyone to see. There are tech solutions such as password managers that can help you store and autofill all your passwords online.
2. Invest in a VPN
A VPN is a tool that encrypts all of the online traffic flowing through a device. It prevents your data from spying eyes including the government, your internet service provider, and cybercriminals.
One of the most convenient ways for startups is to install a VPN router at the office. This way, all devices connected to the router could be protected. This ensures the privacy of your customers’ personal information, company documents, company communication, and so on.
If your startup hires remote workers, it would be difficult to control the security of the network your employees connect to. Providing them with VPN services could ensure that your company’s information is properly encrypted.
3. Backup Company Data
Backing up data to cloud storage services would protect your company in the case of a ransomware attack. Your business’s IT team would, however, have to ensure data can be accessed from the cloud storage at a moment’s notice.
4. Employee Education
Sometimes, hackers can find a firm’s cybersecurity too strong and attempt to gain access through employees. They can employ various methods such as phishing or malware attacks. This way, they can gain access to a firm’s network and data. Educating your employees periodically at cybersecurity training would go a long way in boosting cybersecurity. Apart from educating new employees, existing workers who would have been at previous conferences get updated on new techniques used by cybercriminals.
As more SMBs move their data to the internet, they become increasingly vulnerable to data breaches. Nevertheless, a lot of business owners become oblivious to this fact and utilize low levels of cybersecurity. This has led to a massive increase in the number of successful cyberattacks on firms.
To protect your business you can take various steps such as using a VPN, educating your employees, and backing up company data