Although it’s the large companies that seem to make the headlines when a cyber security breach occurs, no business is immune to the threat. The truth is, small to medium-sized businesses are also vulnerable. Many companies tend to wait until a breach occurs to address the issue, but this isn’t ideal. The goal is to stop cybercrime before it starts. Waiting for a problem to surface could have disastrous consequences, such as information leaks and loss of revenue. Here are some things businesses can do to protect their sensitive information:
Ramp Up Email Security
When preventing hackers from accessing a company’s sensitive information, the goal is to create multiple security layers. This means that the hackers will need to fight through multiple layers to gain access, which decreases the likelihood that they’ll be successful. By encrypting emails and communications, it creates another layer that hackers will need to break through. This extra layer of protection could discourage hackers because they may feel it isn’t worth the hassle.
Develop Companywide Password Policies
Passwords leave a business’s sensitive information vulnerable because they are often easy to crack depending on how the password is defined. That’s why it’s important to create companywide policies regarding passwords. Issues such as how often they are changed to creating smarter passwords should be addressed in these policies. The workforce can be made to adhere to these rules and offers another layer of protection that could prevent some cybercrimes before they occur.
For instance, many employees often use the same password for multiple uses, and this is something that makes it too easy for a hacker to gain access. Requiring that employees never use the same password for multiple uses is an example of a rule that could be included. Businesses could also require a two-factor authentication that would not only require a unique password, but also an authorization code that could be sent to a mobile device as an example.
Install Protection Software and Keep it Updated
Businesses can further protect their assets by installing malware, antivirus, global DNS protection and firewall software programs. In fact, each machine in the company should have all four of these installed in order to prevent cyber attacks. It is critical that the IT department, CIO, or VCIO research the programs that will best service the needs of the company. From there, it is also crucial that the latest versions are always installed so that they can be as effective as possible.
Cybercriminals are dedicated to their craft, which means that their skills evolve quickly. That’s why businesses need to take an aggressive stance when preventing security breaches by using these strategies. However, it is important to understand that even after the security infrastructure is in place, a company’s work isn’t finished. It is important to ensure that everything in the company that is associated with cyber security, such as antivirus software, are all continually up to date.