Remote work has allowed many workers to be more productive than ever, but it’s also made it easier for malicious parties to attack your business. Like many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), you may struggle with data and network security.
Verizon’s Data Breach Investigations Report found that 46% of all data breaches affected SMBs. Starting a business involves many decisions, and new owners often ignore cybersecurity. That can lead to disaster.
Ten Data and Network Security Tips for SMBs
SMBs can reach new markets and increase productivity and efficiency with the help of digital technology. However, it would help if you had a data and network security strategy to protect your data and customers. Here are ten tips to stay safe.
1) Train your employees about security
Implement security policies for employees, such as requiring robust passwords, and define appropriate internet use guidelines that outline penalties for violating security policies. Develop rules of behavior for handling and protecting customer information.
2) Update software regularly
The latest security software, web browser, and operating system is the best defense against viruses, malware, and other online threats. Make sure your antivirus software runs a scan after each update. Update other critical software as soon as it is available.
3) Require strong passwords and authentication
Make sure employees use unique passwords and change them quarterly. Implement multi-factor authentication, which requires more user verification than just a password. Check if your vendors that handle sensitive data, especially financial institutions, offer multi-factor authentication.
4) Set up firewalls for your networks
Firewalls enable networks to protect data from outside access. The operating system’s firewall should be enabled, or free firewall software should be installed online. If your employees work from home, make sure a firewall protects their home systems.
5) Back up copies of critical information
Ensure that all computers are regularly backed up. Documents in word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and accounts receivable/payables are all critical data. Back up data automatically, or at least once a week, and store the copies offsite or in the cloud.
6) Control physical access to your computers
Protect business computers from unauthorized access. It is easy for laptops to be stolen or lost, so lock them up when unattended. Establish separate user accounts for each employee and require strong passwords. Only trusted IT staff and key personnel should be granted administrative privileges.
7) Secure your Wi-Fi networks
Ensure your workplace’s Wi-Fi network is secure, encrypted, and hidden. The easiest way to hide your Wi-Fi network is to deploy your wireless access point or router, so it doesn’t broadcast the network name. Protect router access with a password.
8) Develop and practice your incident response plan
Even with your best efforts, your company may be the victim of a cyberattack at some point. If that day comes, your staff must be prepared for the fallout. Prepare an incident response plan to identify attacks before they do too much damage so they can be quelled as soon as possible.
9) Restrict worker access to data and software
Ensure that no one employee has access to all data systems. It is essential that employees only have access to the data systems they need for their jobs and that they are prohibited from installing software without permission.
10) Implement a mobile device security action plan
Mobile devices can pose security and management challenges, especially if they access corporate networks or hold confidential information. Users should protect their devices with passwords, encrypt data, and install security apps. Your company should establish procedures for reporting lost or stolen devices.
Meet Me In The Cloud Is Here To Help
Are you feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry. Meet Me In The Cloud has you covered. We help protect your business from global security threats by utilizing best-in-class managed data and network security solutions.
We tailor industry-leading cybersecurity platforms to meet your needs from deployment to adoption. By putting your business goals front and center, we create a security posture tailored to your needs.
Meet Me In The Cloud works with you to detect and respond to cyber threats. You can trust us to keep your employees and data secure no matter where your users are located or what devices they use.
Meet Me In The Cloud can turn your digital collaboration tools into productivity engines. At any point in your collaboration journey, we partner with you to fully adopt your preferred technology tools and provide data and network security services if needed. To get started, contact our experts today. 1-866-221-3221