Internet Security 101
We live in a world where businesses thrive online and business is conducted online. You likely can’t avoid the Internet and you wouldn’t want to even if you could, but what happens when a cyber criminal breaches your security system and steals valuable data? What do you do when the breach you “never thought would happen to you” actually happens? Instead of focusing on your latest marketing strategies or building a social media following, get your Internet security in place to ensure that your business doesn’t run into a costly and potentially business-ending security breach.
#1 – Online Passwords Need to Be Secure
This is one of the most common Internet security suggestions, but it’s worth repeating because so many people ignore this simple truth: Your passwords are the only thing keeping hackers from accessing your accounts. If a hacker can figure out your password, they can gather more information and hack into other accounts. In no time at all, hackers have all of your data at their disposal. This is true for your personal life and your business data.
What to do? Invest in a password manager or develop your own advanced system that includes the following: password length of 15-20 characters; password that includes symbols, lowercase letters, uppercase letters, and numbers; and unique passwords (meaning a new password for each account/site). This is the best way to keep your accounts secure from online hackers.
#2 – Your Internet Connection Cannot Be Trusted
A secure browser ensures that your Internet connection can be trusted and hackers cannot gain access to your clicks. Have you heard the advice about not accessing important information such as financial information at an Internet café? The reason for this advice is because using a non-secure network – such as free Wi-Fi provided by your favorite local café – is an easy way for hackers to access your data. If they are on the same network that you are, there are more connection vulnerabilities to exploit and you run the risk of a cyber attack.
What to do? Do not access important information on public Wi-Fi networks. Use an encrypted connection, VPN or SSH, at your office. The entire office should run on the encrypted connection for an added level of protection and Internet security.
#3 – Always Update Your Software
When software providers update their software, you should download the new update immediately. Most software updates contain security patches that help to patch up prior vulnerabilities and weaknesses. By waiting to update, you run the risk of leaving those vulnerabilities open for cyber thieves to take advantage and hack into your system.
What to do? This one is easy. Set your computer software to “update automatically” so that you can always have the latest software. For your business, have your IT team go around to each employee’s computer and ensure that software will be updated automatically. Don’t leave it to chance.
#4 – If Your Data is Accessed, Make it Difficult to Decipher
Encrypted data is difficult to decipher for hackers and can make retrievable data impenetrable. Encryption keeps things such as email, documents, files, and messages completely covered if someone gets on to your network and into your computer. If a cyber criminal downloads your valuable data, but is unable to access the data because it is encrypted then you have narrowly avoided a major security breach.
What to do? Make sure that you have an encryption method on your local levels of storage as well as for your cloud-based storage. Make sure that the cloud-based encryption does not simply cover transmitting data, but also covers the actual cloud-based files. K3 Business Technology can devise and set-up an encryption system that works for your business and personal life.
#5 – Ask the Professionals, And Then Let Them Help
Reviewing your business network is important and hiring an Internet security consultant can make an auditing process possible. The consultant will spend their time auditing your network and determining what changes need to be made to keep your data as secure as possible. These Internet security consultants can then take the time to update your Internet security system as well as educate your employees about the new and improved protocol.
What to do? An outside Internet security consultant can take the pressure off of your in-house IT team and make sure that you meet all of the latest Internet security standards to avoid cyber attacks. When you look at the sheer volume of costs associated with a security breach, it’s worth it to be sure that your system and business are as prepared as possible to weather any breach attempts.
Learn more about what you can do to protect yourself and your business data from online security threats by contacting K3 Business Technology. Call 303-770-8050 to speak with one of our Internet security consultants. We know the value of keeping your network and data secure. Trust us to ensure that your business has a reliable and strong Internet security set-up.