For anyone running a small or medium sized business, your IT security is not one of those issues to leave till later to sort out, a secondary consideration for when there is downtime. The truth is, that if you let in a virus or ransomware, you could experience more downtime than you bargained for. We can never understate the importance of ensuring your staff and managers are all versed in security protocols and have rudimentary training in how to spot and how to protect against cyber threats.
60% of SMEs breached go out of business within six months
It’s vital to ensure everyone who is connected to a company computer understands policies that you set up to protect company data. For anyone who thinks this should not be on the high-end of the priority list then check the statistics, for instance 44% of SMEs report being a victim of a cyber-attack whilst (and this is kind of terrifying when you think on it) 60% of SMEs breached go out of business within six months of the incident.
Here’s four fundamental pieces of advice to make sure your team can protect your business from online attacks:
1. Guard With Software
Make sure you have good security software set up to protect from unwelcome intrusions. Have one good brand of software package installed on every computer – if you have more they can fight each other and cause issues. Off the shelf solutions like Symantec Norton Security and Backup, Bitdefender Internet Security and Kaspersky Total Security can keep watch over your files adequately. Also, make sure you update with security patches regularly.
2. Train Your Staff
Give your employees some training in spotting dangerous spam and the tell-tale signs of malware. The training can be in tutorials, articles, guides and you can even have quizzes which is a fun way of testing knowledge. You can try out, for example, the McAfee Phishing Quiz.
3. Provide Real Examples
The best way to learn is to see with your own eyes what you need to be looking for in terms of suspicious emails. Have a one-on-one session with each staff member to show how to differentiate from safe emails and potentially damaging ones. Look at the spam folder and see what it has picked out as dodgy and why – obviously don’t download them – just observe the tactics the scammers use in their subject matter headings and fake addresses. There is no substitute to on the job training.
4. Have Policies Across All Devices
BYOD – Bring Your Own Device, is a bit of a buzz term in IT but be assured it presents a very real endpoint issue now for a firm’s IT security. Information workers use three or more devices regularly, in different locations with different software or apps. Mobile devices should be password protected and ideally should have device encryption when accessing company data or emails.
There is no reason why your company, with a bit of expert steering, cannot protect itself from cybercrime but it starts with your IT policy. Make sure you form one and that it is adhered to so that you don’t fall foul to those who would steal and ruin your hard work.
To ensure you are safe from threats, contact the friendly team at Netitude, who can set up state of the art security solutions for your company’s IT.
Posted to Network Security