As businesses take more and more of their operations online, cyber security is incredibly important. You need to protect your assets, your employees and most importantly, the information and data that your employees trust you to keep private.

With the rates of data breaches and hacks skyrocketing over the past few years, this focus on cybersecurity should be greater than ever. With that in mind, this blog post is going to examine and look at some best practices when it comes to securing your business.

Educate Your Employees

First and foremost, you need to ensure that your employees are educated about your cyber security guidelines and protocols. Even if you have the best security systems in place, if your employees are not practicing good security, your company could fall victim to a hack, breach or other security concerns.

You need to train your employees on what to watch out for, the various threats that they face and the safest way to use all of the tools and software that are required for their jobs. While you can train employees in-house, there are also companies and services out there that are willing to train employees to ensure they are getting the best security education as possible.

Control Access and Permissions

When it comes to sensitive information about customers or private information about the company, there is no need to let every employee access it. Only those who truly need to use the information should be able to access it. The more people that have access to certain information, the higher the chance that something leaks or is compromised.

You can control access based on role, based on seniority or based on any other way you see fit. But instead of controlling access manually by hand, you should look into an access control or permission management tool. In addition to helping you manage access and permissions, many of these tools can also offer comprehensive user access reports and other important features.

Use Strong Passwords and 2FA

People have known about how important using strong passwords is for years and years, yet some stats show that many people still use relatively weak passwords. Using weak passwords can make it incredibly easy for hackers and data thieves to gain access to accounts.

As a result, you should be sure that every employee at your business (as well as your systems themselves) all use strong passwords. Strong passwords are generally longer and contain letters, numbers, and symbols in unpredictable order. Your passwords shouldn’t have anything to do with yourself, your company or anything else that people might be able to guess. In addition to strong passwords, you should be sure to use 2FA to confirm the person entering the password is the person the account belongs to.

Keep and Maintain Backups

While a main goal of cybersecurity is to reduce the chance of a malicious attack, these attacks aren’t the only reason why data is compromised. Power outages, machine crashes and other unforeseen circumstances can lead to important data or information being lost. Because of this ever-constant possibility, it is very important to keep updated backups.

Having backups will ensure you never lose all of your information and data at once, and could save you if an emergency occurs. You can manually backup your information by using an external hard drive, but there are also services out there that allow you to do automatic backups to the cloud, which is often the preferred method.

Keep Software Up to Date

While the constant security updates for your computer or software, it is very important to heed them and keep your software up to date. These updates will often address issues in the software and can add protection to fight off emerging vulnerabilities too. These should not be ignored and your company and employees should update as often as possible.

Your company should be using many different kinds of software, especially virus protection and malware protection. With many employees opening phishing emails, it is more important than ever to have up-to-date and cutting edge malware protection.  

Utilize Firewalls and Secure Networks

Firewalls have the purpose of protecting your network from external threats. While many companies will install them on their servers, they will forget to install them on computers, mobile devices, laptops and tablets that employees use in the office as well.

Also, if you have employees that work from home, which is becoming much more common, you need to be sure that they put a firewall on their home network. This firewall is often seen as the “first line of defense” against a potential attack and it is recommended that every small business use one.

Hopefully this blog post has been able to help you learn some helpful and important tips to better secure your business going forward.

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