In this digital era, your data is a goldmine and cyber criminals are after it. Whether you’re an individual or an organisation, everyone is a prime target for hackers. Gone are the days when security is not part of a business policy and having a solid strategy around it is optional.
In an earlier blog we shared the common cyber fraud schemes and threats to help you understand how these could reach your systems and a few tips that you can quickly adopt to protect your business.
In this blog, we share more ways on how you can win the war against cyber threats.
#1 Understand where your vulnerabilities lie
By identifying what areas in your system a hacker can gain access to, you get a better grasp of where your security flaws are and you can identify where you need to strengthen your system’s defences.
There are tools available to perform vulnerability scanning and testing which your internal IT team can complete. However interpreting the results correctly and properly planning for remediation actions will require someone with deep technical skills, or at least an in-depth training on cyber security. If you don’t have the bandwidth or the skillset today, you can always check with a trusted security partner to help perform vulnerability tests on your network and servers.
#2 Backup your data regularly
Cyber crimes are like natural disasters: you never know when disaster will strike. Backing up your data on a daily basis to the cloud is an additional security effort so when a ransomware strikes, you won’t have to pay just to gain access to your data. I said ‘cloud’ because some ransomware attacks even get to your local servers which results in encrypted and locked servers. Backups don’t necessarily make a cyber security attack painless but it does help your business operations from being completely halted or debilitated.
#3 Update your software
Keeping your operating system, browser, anti-virus and other software up to date not only provides you with added new features but also comes with the latest patches for vulnerabilities. These patches are usually free. One way to make this a regular habit is to determine a patching schedule and ensure that your servers and workstations comply.
#4 Encrypt your data
Your laptops, mobile devices, and portable storage should be encrypted, including sensitive email and data in transit. It is an inexpensive way to keep your data safe, especially with some tools that are free. Windows 10 for example can encrypt any portable storage attached to your laptop through BitLocker. Office 365 also has built-in security features such as Data Loss Prevention (DLP) that protects sensitive data from inadvertent disclosure, and Information Rights Management which helps limit actions that users can take on files or emails.
#5 Develop a company culture for cyber security
It is not the sole responsibility of merely one group in a company to make their data safe for employees and customers. It should be a shared responsibility. But how do you foster a company culture of security? Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Keep security concepts simple. People are almost always willing to embrace something that is easy to understand. Explaining the basics of security and why it is important will go a long way.
- Drive security awareness internally. Educate your staff on how to spot suspicious emails or links and what to do when they encounter them.
- The senior leadership team must support and consistently affirm a pro-security stance to create a holistic cyber security culture. Without management drive, there is unlikely to be a conscious effort among employees.
Triumph over cyber threats
The above security measures will help you inch your way towards winning against cybercrime. By following these tips, you can save your business from future risks of becoming the next security breach headline.
Do you know if you have a secure IT infrastructure? What steps have you taken before to keep your business protected? Leave your comments below and let’s share ideas.
Alternatively, get in touch to learn more about how you can double down on protecting your business or visit our website for more information.