Massive kind of cyber security breaches that shattered some top enterprises threw the topic of cyber security to the popular discussion. Though only large companies find their way to the headlines, small businesses are not free from several cyber security threats. The horrible fact remains that the impact of cyber-attack on a small business can often be devastating. Studies by National Cyber Security Alliance show that within six months of being hacked, over 60 percent of businesses have quit the scene once for all.
The most common practices to combat cyber security issues are to deploy powerful antivirus software and also backing up the data on a regular basis. This is the first step any small business can take. However, there is still a lot more to stay protected at a time when the hackers have grown technologically advanced to challenge any kind of proactive measure. Here are ten most important cyber security tips for small business must implement across their enterprise.
Deploy strong passwords
Those enterprises depending on easy to forge passwords like ABCD or 1234 are only facilitating a cake walk for the hackers to crack their system code. Experts advise to put some innovation in passwords including numerals, characters and alphabets. Tough passwords make it tough for hackers to crack them. Time and again remind your employees to create new and strong passwords and also change them often.
Keep password attempts to minimum
Most hackers try random passwords till they are able to open your account successfully. If you have implemented a six digit pin, you are only creating a million unique possibilities and so your account is never safe. Today there are amazing password cracking software that can easily guess your codes within a few minutes. Therefore keep the password attempts to minimum during every stage of the authentication process.
Rely on good password management software
Password management tools help create strong passwords and also remember them. So, many businesses wish to install them for their many advantages. However, the big downside to them is the passwords are stored in their databases making it handy for the hackers to get all of them if they can access the location just once. So, ascertain the password management tool you are depending on is reliable.
Make use of on-screen keyboard to enter sensitive information
Today there are advanced key logging software that can record your keystrokes. Therefore your data is under severe vulnerability especially when you use shared networks. If you use the onscreen or virtual keyboard to key in sensitive data with the clicks of the mouse, you are successfully falsifying the capabilities of such keylogging software.
Backup data regularly
Data backup is something that you must never take lightly. Not only you must back them up, you also must manage them effectively. For example, if you are depending on cloud storage for backup, then you are depending on a remote location to store your data. This means someone can gain access to your data easily. So, it is important that you encrypt and password protect your documents before storing them on a remote server.
Promote cyber security awareness across your organization
Cyber security breaches have become more common than you can imagine. Therefore it is very important to train all the employees of your organization on these aspects through seminars and talks. Also, test the IT knowledge of the employees regularly. Clearly publish your policies regarding hacking and breach of data security in the organization.
Never store the CVV number of your customers
Though getting the customer’s card details with their consent helps in making future checkouts easier, this practice can increase the risk of customer data being accessed by the hackers. So, store credit card numbers without recording the CVV number. Entering the three digit CVV number is not going to be a difficulty for the customer.
Restrict the access to systems and network elements
Never allow outsiders and unauthorized personnel to use your systems. In case this necessary like a technician attending on the repairs, it is advisable you have someone supervise them while they are on the job. Once they finish the task, lock up your computer. Frequently monitor the personal devices of your employees.
Make regular updates to your software
Often you get pop up messages that prompt you to upgrade your software. Software updates is a sure measure towards advancing your computer’s security. If this is not done, your system becomes more vulnerable to hacking as well as malware. Since the makers of software release updates that can tackle newer vulnerabilities, this is very important.
Secure the networks
To prevent unauthorized access, hide and secure your Wi-Fi networks by hiding the Service Set Identifier found in the router, encrypting the wireless access point, disabling access from third party network, and scanning your network thoroughly ad regularly.
While most cyber-attacks target big corporations, small businesses have no reasons to feel they are in the safe zone. Nevertheless, their security threats are by no means small. Experts say over 45 percent of cyber-attacks primarily target small businesses. They may fall a victim to hacking anytime suffering on account of malware, ransomware and data theft since they most often rely on ineffective and outdated protection measures and less knowledgeable staff, which can help the hackers achieve their ends far more easily. Therefore, it is important that they safeguard their interests by implementing the few security measures that will help them stay protected.