Nobody is exempt from falling victim to a cyber attack and with everyone attached to their mobile devices and computers lately due to the COVID-19 pandemic, small and medium-sized businesses, also known as SMBs, face a higher risk of becoming prey for hungry cyber criminals.
To prevent a cyber attack against your SMB, here are 6 tips that will help you stay safe and out of harm’s way when it comes to being on a cyber criminal’s radar.
Tip #1: Provide Cyber-Awareness Training
This is something that was definitely not in the norm of training in a workplace pre-coronavirus, however, it should have always been a standard in company training as cyber attacks did not just show up along with COVID-19.
It’s important to empower your employees and fellow team-members to recognise when a cyber threat is present in their devices and how to act according to the threat at bay. Cybersecurity awareness can mitigate your business’ chances of falling victim to cyber criminals who may use the lack of knowledge your employees possess as a loophole to get into your network.
Tip #2: Keep An Offline Backup
Backing up sensible data should be part of a company’s normal routine, as it would help you keep all of your digital information intact in case of device theft or a cybersecurity breach.
Not only would this help you continue running your day-to-day operations in case of malware blocking your activities, but you would also be able to have more options regarding recovery if you that malware happens to be ransomware.
However most businesses only keep online backups which all become infected when ransomware strikes. To be properly protected you need to keep an offline backup and follow the 3:2:1 strategy of backing up data to be really safe.
Speaking of safes – keep your offsite backup in a fire proof safe (rated for 1 hour of fire protection) so that should the building/house burn down you don’t lose data as well.
Tip #3: Have a Workplace Password Management Policy
Setting up a password with one capital letter and at least one number is not enough to keep your accounts secure. Nowadays nearly every single type of online account has several different ways in which users can set up different layers of protection to keep their accounts safe.
It’s up to company executives to provide employees with the right information so that they understand the importance of layering account entry to mitigate the chances of an account breach.
Tip #4: Use Modern Firewall and Antivirus Protection
The normal antivirus software you can get from an electronics store may be enough to safeguard a personal computer, but when it comes to business, there is much more that should be done to keep your digital assets safe.
One of the best things you could do to compliment antivirus software is to use operating systems with embedded firewalls, such as Windows operating systems or Mac OS X. You should also run some additional protection with a commercially licensed firewall and antivirus protection.
Tip #5: Encrypt Mobile Devices
Encryption is just another word to describe the general idea of protecting information stored in a device. Tablets, phones, computers or servers can all be encrypted to protect the data they store, which can be anything from photographs to emails and even conversations by text message.
By adding an encryption tool and requiring a PIN number to access your advice, you will be able to protect your information further than by simply having a password to log into your accounts. Some phones and computers already contain encryption tools such as fingerprint or face recognition. Ensuring that these features are activated in every company device will surely help to keep devices safer.
Tip #6: Have an Incident Response Plan
Even by following all of these tips you could still be a target of cyber criminals, which is why you need to come up with an incident response plan so that you and your team know how to react accordingly.
When your network or devices have been hacked, there will be a lot of questions and you will want to do a lot of things that will be plain out ineffective, such as running an antivirus software scan. If your network has been hacked, the only thing you can do is to get in touch with experts in the field of cybersecurity and let them take care of the problem.
So, keep our contact information handy and call us to help you set up everything you need to prevent a cyber attack.