As COVID-19 has spurred many businesses to move more into the online world, there arises more cyber-threats. Amy Cavendish, Content Strategist at TechFools, discusses 5 ways for businesses to protect themselves.
The current COVID-19 pandemic has hurt many businesses, and to keep their business from failing, some have moved their businesses to a digital storefront to keep customers hooked.
But the move to a digital storefront has its own challenges, the number one challenge being cybersecurity. There are many threats that face Australian businesses nowadays.
The Dangers Facing Businesses
Ransomware attacks have increased in popularity since the 2017 WannaCry attacks, and the current COVID-19 pandemic has not helped curb this increase in popularity.
Ransomware has caused millions of dollars in damages to businesses the past few years, and they remain one of the largest cyber-threats facing businesses today.
Scams permeate the Internet. Scammers rely on social engineering and manipulation to coax personal/financial information out of victims—these scams are known as phishing scams. And 45% of employees in Australia experienced an email phishing attack, according to a Barracuda Networks study.
Phishing scams target both individuals and businesses, and it’s common for people to fall for them. As a result, they represent a large threat to businesses, especially accounting professionals, and CEOs.
Data breaches occur when a company leaks confidential information, either through human error or malicious attack.
Data breaches are becoming more and more common, and no company is safe against data breaches.
5 Ways for Businesses to Protect Themselves
1. Using a VPN
If a cybercriminal gains access to your business’s network, they’ll be able to see everything your employees do, from what websites they visit to every time they access a certain database.
To prevent this, use a VPN app to encrypt your entire network. This will revoke a hacker’s ability to see what your employees are doing while on the network.
2. Educating Employees on Proper Cybersecurity Techniques
Data breaches happen for a variety of reasons, but many of these reasons can be traced back to human error. Because of this, it’s important your employees understand proper cybersecurity etiquette.
Make cybersecurity training a mandatory course for new hires. Hire a third-party to teach your employees. The important thing is that your employees are trained.
3. Preventing Insiders/Leaked Information
Not all cybercriminals sneak onto a network—some walk through the front door. Whether it’s a rogue employee or a third-party provider leaking information, insiders are a major source of data breaches.
There are multiple ways to prevent insiders, from retaining employee satisfaction to screening new hires to sticking with reputable third-party services.
4. Enforcing Strong Passwords Company-Wide
Enterprise accounts often hold confidential information that if leaked could put your business in danger. Fortunately, most accounts can be protected by enforcing the creation of strong passwords.
Make it necessary for every employee to have a strong, unique password for every service they use that’s related to work.
5. Practice the 3-2-1 Rule
Losing data means losing days, weeks, or months of work and customer information. This, in turn, slows down productivity and can cost your business thousands of dollars in damages.
Be sure to follow the 3-2-1 rule when backing up data, which goes:
- Have three copies of data,
- Store the copies on two forms of media,
- And keep one backup copy off-premises.
Keeping a backup both on-site and off-site also helps with security, since if a hacker destroys one backup, you have another.
Amy Cavendish is a content strategist at TechFools, a tech blog aiming to inform readers about the potential dangers of technology and introduce them to the best ways to protect themselves online. Connect with Amy via LinkedIn