Small Business Cybersecurity 101: Simple Tips To Protect Your Data

Cybercriminals aren’t only going after big corporations. There are thousands of small businesses that have had their sensitive company or customer information compromised.
Small Business Cybersecurity 101: Simple Tips To Protect Your Data
Why Is Cybersecurity A Concern For Small Businesses?
Smaller organizations are often prime targets for cyberattacks because they aren’t protected by the same level of security infrastructure as larger companies — yet they still have valuable data to offer. According to research from the 2020 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, 28% of data breach victims were small businesses.
A National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) survey reported that 28% of small business respondents had experienced an official data breach within the previous 12 months. After a breach, 37% of businesses suffered a financial loss, 25% filed for bankruptcy and 10% went out of business. Most small business decision makers surveyed (88%) said they believe they’re at least a somewhat likely target for cyberattacks, and 63% said cybersecurity is a high priority for their business. Yet only 46% felt very prepared to respond quickly to a data breach.
Untangling the aftermath of a cyberattack can be expensive, stressful and time-consuming for your business. But you can take simple, proactive steps to safeguard your company’s most important information.
Identify Your Vulnerabilities
Work with your internal IT staff or an external security consultant to audit your current cybersecurity practices and protections. These are common areas of vulnerability for small businesses:
  • Underfunded or inadequate IT staff:Cybersecurity is sometimes an afterthought in a small business. If you don’t have the budget for a dedicated IT team, you can usually outsource cybersecurity monitoring and protection for a lower monthly cost. 
  • Lack of employee training: Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated in their methods, and employees may unwittingly expose your business to risk by clicking on a phishing email or downloading a suspicious document. 
  • Insufficient computer and network security:Hackers can gain access to company systems in a number of ways, including unsecured Wi-Fi networks or personal devices, weak passwords or software with outdated security patches. 
Create A Cybersecurity Plan
Once you have assessed your current risks, you can develop new procedures to minimize your exposure to cyberattacks.
  • Establish regular assessments: Install vulnerability scanning tools to monitor your networks, websites, software and other systems, as well as other protections such as firewalls, VPNs and antivirus software. 
  • Keep software updated: Always run the latest versions of software, installing patches as soon as they’re released. 
  • Use two-factor authentication and strong passwords: Require everyone in your company to use two-factor authentication for all applications and websites. Set up each employee with a password manager profile that securely stores their login information.
  • Back up data: Protect your company against ransomware attacks by backing up all data on-site and with a cloud provider. 
  • Have a response strategy:Plan for the worst-case scenario, and create clear procedures to follow in case of a cyberattack. Designate a response team, and do test runs to improve protocols.
Educate Your Employees
Stronger cybersecurity starts with better employee education. Provide regular training for your team, teaching them about common threats and outlining company security requirements.
  • Build security into devices: Know which devices — laptops, phones, tablets — your employees are using to access company data, especially if people are working remotely. Extend security procedures, such as data encryption, password management and software updates, to all devices used for work purposes. 
  • Recognize common scams: Educate employees about how to spot cybercriminals’ frequently used tactics, including phishing emails or texts, malware downloads, social media spam or social engineering attacks. 
A cyberattack can have serious consequences for your business.
By taking an active role in your cybersecurity and implementing protective measures now, you can save yourself time, money and heartache in the future.
Secure your business with Zagame Security Group. Contact us today at 1300 989 676 or at our website for a FREE quote!

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Rod Zagami has operated a security business since early 1999 in East Gippsland and has established a professional and efficient security service. Zagame Security Group was formed in 2014, expanding the range of products and services we offer our clients.

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