12 Successful Cybersecurity Norms to Safeguard Small Businesses
Let’s confess that almost nobody cares about the outcome of cyberattacks until they get affected. And, if you are one of them, considering that you own a small business that is beyond any kind of monetary or data-driven loss, then we are quite scared for you. Since you are connecting to the entire world with the help of the internet, you are still under the eyes of cyber-attackers. The hackers won’t spare anybody; big or small, popular among media or not.
Even, the statistics of current cyber-attacks are literally threatening. Cybercriminals have mostly targeted small businesses. Almost 43% of small businesses have encountered such cybercrimes, whereas 88% of small businesses have felt that they are on the verge of vulnerability.
As small businesses don’t take interest in cybersecurity protocols, hackers find it easy to sneak into the business data. And, stealing your enterprise data can lead to bankruptcy. So, break this misconception and roll up your sleeves and be determined to protect your business from cybersecurity threats. Here are some proven cybersecurity tips that can make you feel confident.
- Deploy Firewall
You have to defend the attack primarily and you must consider a firewall. A strong firewall system keeps your data hidden from trespassers. Make sure that every employee has installed a compatible firewall according to the requirements. On the other hand, an internal firewall is also useful to make internet usage safer.
If any of your employees are currently working from home, take them into count, as well. Ask them to install an essential firewall system. For better security premises, the employees should impose a firewall on the network system, too. Moreover, protect your business websites with SSL Installation.
- Enhance Staff Awareness
You can initiate the cybersecurity protocols but only your effort can’t make any big difference. All the employees, collectively, have to join your efforts to secure the business from web phishers. Studies have shown that only 14 per cent among those 43 per cent of small businesses could protect their businesses as their employees regularly practise cybersecurity protocols. So, this is the turning key to get rid of unwanted cyber-attacks to your business.
However, startups might find it severely difficult as they are on a comparatively low budget. But, you shouldn’t overlook the importance of staff training on cybersecurity practices. Ask them to create encrypted files to store banking information and update software often.
The employees should back up all personal and professional information and impose a multi-factor authentication system while logging into business profiles. Additionally, advise them not to browse illegitimate websites and report suspicious requests to their personal emails.
Being an owner, ensure to conduct such awareness discussion at least once a month to let them know about security updates and other flaws.
- Invest in a Total-Security Plan
To sieve out only necessary information from the internet and remove any other vulnerabilities, anti-malware software is not skippable. Well, a cyber-attack is more than only malware and its other by-products. Apart from viruses and malware, phishing and ransomware are equally considerable when we are talking about cybersecurity threats. Most data breaching cases mostly take place through phishing.
So, it’s the responsibility of every employee to install an all-rounder protection software in his or her working system. Additionally, the updates to such anti-malware software provide extra protection against cyber-attacks. Since hackers have been trying to peek into your devices at any cost, they spare not a single latest technology.
And, the anti-malware software keeps updating its security patches to maximize the barrier between you and the attacker. However, attackers might target anyone in the business, irrespective of his or her designation. So, pay extra attention from grass-root level of employees to CEO posts.
- Evaluate Risks
Before deciding any further cybersecurity measures, ask yourself how much you have compromised regarding system security and network details. Searching for all the risk-associated flaws would help you more than randomly selecting norms for cybersecurity phenomena. To start from the very beginning, think where you used to save all the business data. Additionally, whom you had considered for looking after data and access it. Find out if there is any link or seam from where the data can be breached.
Basically, all these queries would help you in identifying all possible risks to your enterprise data. And, whatever information you have collected so far while assessing the risks, use them to deploy a strong base for security purposes for your business. If you make any changes to the storage or access decisions, don’t forget to review them, as well.
- Always be Ready with Updates
The cybersecurity threats are consistently improving with dynamic algorithms. That’s bad news for all the business entrepreneurs and owners. And, the only key to sustain against all the scams, is continuous updates to better versions of anti-malware and antivirus software. Make sure that every employee enforces the same purchased software for security reasons.
Moreover, you might haven’t halted with installing only antivirus software. Update each and every firewall, anti-malware software including the internal firewall ones to fortify the best cybersecurity solutions. Stay updated with every cybersecurity software to keep your personal banking details and enterprise data extremely confidential.
- Keep Wi-Fi Networks Strictly Privileged
Certainly, your employees are accessing Wi-Fi networks in your business place in order to stay connected to the internet. But, are the networks secure enough to prohibit any kind of unwanted trespassing access? Ensure that you have locked your Wi-Fi connections with a strong password and only the employees know that passwords.
Additionally, it’s a wiser decision to hide your Wi-Fi networks’ presence around the workspace. So, any guest or others can’t reach it. Change the settings related to the access point so that it doesn’t broadcast its SSID. Otherwise, if anyone gets the chance to crack it, they can interfere into business details, then the consequences can go endangering- such as stealing important transaction details or demanding a ransom after collapsing most of the business data.
- Focus on Passwords
Whether you take Wi-Fi networks or devices into account, every system should have a definite and separate password. Request all employees to set unique but strong passwords for their devices and encrypted files. Additionally, the password should not contain any specific name, date or similar characters. Make use of uppercase and lowercase characters along with special symbols and numeric to create a unique and bold password.
Moreover, pay special care while opting for any kind of partnership for network and payment checkpoints. Verify if the concerned body maintains enough secure preventions along with multi-factor authentication modes. Because they are going to tackle payment options, that needs to be highly protective against any flaw. In addition to this, avail SSL Installation on business websites to keep the payment gateway protected.
- Arrange Mobile Device Plans
Mobile devices such as smartphones, smartwatches and tablets have made the task easy to keep a constant eye over important business updates. But, it has leveraged the risk factors, too. For instance, if you sign in to your business portal through your smartphone in a cafe, there are chances that someone might stalk your credentials over your shoulder. Don’t let it happen and avail mobile device plans.
According to recent business reports, 59 per cent of global businesses hold BYOD policies. However, setting a password, multi-factor authentication and installing security apps are mostly helpful for such devices. You shouldn’t use any kind of public network especially when you are focussing on your business right. And, ask your employees to do the same. Nevertheless, you need to report if you lose your mobile devices, or they get stolen.
- Highlight the Backup Procedures
When it comes to a business, large or small, there are enormous data files regarding employees, transactions, business policies, accounts, project spreadsheets and countless ones. Thanks to the digital system that you need not store all details in files. But, still, there are chances of stealing from storage devices.
In case your business encounters any massive data loss condition or malware attack, a time-to-time backup policy can be your ultimate saviour. Moreover, you need not worry much if any hacker hijacks your enterprise data. For better alliance, use cloud storage technologies to find a safe, alternate storage for your business information. And, run backup processes every week.
- 10.Stay an Extra Step Ahead for Payment Processors
Business means transactions, obviously. Whether it’s for internal matters of your company or any customer paying through the payment gateway on the website, both need to be extremely secured. Moreover, you have to make sure that the regarding payment processor follows compatible cybersecurity practices, as per the best standard values.
Additionally, you have to mitigate complexities at the gateway of payment. Especially, when you are considering cards for payment, payment complications might stretch payment headaches. Because complicated systems are way more difficult to deal with. And, advise the employees not to use the same device for making the payment and browsing the internet.
- 11.Keep Hardware Components Safe
Till now, we have mostly mentioned software components. But, it doesn’t mean that hardware is entirely safe and can’t convey any type of data breaching. In fact, stealing of hardware components is equally frightening as software details. To start with, encrypt computers and other peripheral devices with strong passwords. Passwords are on the first row of defence. So, don’t ignore their importance, at all.
Manage your hardware with anti-theft wires. Avail CCTV surveillance all over the workspace. On the other hand, avail a separate room for placing servers and other important network equipment. Install biometric authentication system for the server room and at the entry, of course.
- 12.Come in a Partnership with a Cyber Security Agency
In case, you discover the cybersecurity measures are difficult, then let the professionals handle it for your business. As, we understand that you can’t spend your entire day just monitoring every employee for violating cybersecurity practices or deciding new techniques to cope up.
How to Select the Right Cybersecurity Company?
First, don’t settle for cheaper options. Ensure that the company works well with threat detection to ensure complete protection. Additionally, inspect if the company can support your business from the very first day throughout your journey towards success. Before making a commitment, test and try their services with a sample project of your business. Additionally, don’t forget to get a document of all the policies and progress related to cybersecurity practices for your business, to date.