More than half of all business-focused cyber attacks target small and medium businesses — because while large businesses may have more to steal, small businesses tend to have systems more vulnerable to attack. Protecting your business and your customer’s data from a cyber attack is something every small business owner should take seriously — but how? Here are six cyber security tips for small businesses.
Hire an expert consultant.
Chances are, you know more about business than cyber security. Consider contracting a cyber security expert to review your system and make suggestions for improvement. While hiring an expert isn’t cheap, it’s one of the best ways to create a secure system that works best for your business, instead of a one-size-fits-all solution that may have some loopholes.
Consider cyber insurance.
Unlike regular business insurance, cyber insurance protects your company in the event of a security breach. Cyber insurance can help cover the cost of an attack if one occurs — which on average can cost $275,000. Besides the actual loss from the hack, a security breach can create costs in fines and remediation, as well as notifying and assisting affected customers.
Work with your employees.
Employees can create vulnerable points in any security system simply by trying to create a password that they will remember. Work with your employees to ensure they understand best practices for cyber security, such as using a password that includes both upper and lower case letters as well as numbers — and that doesn’t include an easy-to-guess phrase or word. Sharing cyber security tips with employees is an easy way to avoid potential weak spots in cyber security.
Store information safely with a VDR.
Businesses have plenty of sensitive data — a virtual data room is a secure way to handle that data. With a VDR, you can share information with employees, yet VDRs are much harder to access by hackers than more basic storage solutions. If you need to store and save lots of data, a VDR is a good idea.
Keep your security software — and other software — up to date.
Security software, like antivirus programs, is a simple, affordable way to help prevent cyber attacks. Keep antivirus programs up-to-date, without a lapse in your coverage or subscription. Similarly, keep your computer software and operating system up-to-date — as software companies find security vulnerabilities, they release updates to fix the problem, so make updating your computer — and smartphone — regularly a habit.
Protect your internet connection.
Wi-fi can easily be a vulnerability. Protect your business by setting up a firewall, a straight-forward process done by using firewall software. Check with any employees that take work home with them to make sure their home network is also protected. Along with a firewall, encrypt your router and hide the name of your private wireless network from anyone that may come within range.
Small business owners have a lot on their plates — but ignoring cyber security could be a disastrous mistake. With a few simple changes, however, you can better protect your business against attacks.