Cyberattacks and data breaches are an unfortunate part of doing business.
It’s the nature of today’s business environment. It’s no secret that much of business is transacted online these days. Alas, that also means small business data is exposed to the prying eyes of hackers and viral programs.
We all hear about the giant data breaches, which affect large corporations. But much more common are smaller-profile attacks against small businesses.
So let’s look at what steps you can take for better data protection for your small business.
1. Create a Plan
The first step in securing your business information is to devise a good cybersecurity plan.
The key to cyberattack prevention is to develop an incident response plan. An incident response plan should include information about where data is stored and backed up. It should also include when to contact law enforcement or craft a press release about the incident.
2. Beef Up Email Security
Here’s the thing: most cyberattacks aren’t as high-tech and sophisticated as you might think.
In fact, many attacks rely on the old standbys—phishing and other email scams. So a key component of any data protection plan should involve training employees to recognize and avoid these scams.
Simple precautions help prevent these types of attacks. Train employees not to open suspicious emails or links, and develop robust email safeguards to avoid these threats.
3. Smarter Passwords
Juggling passwords is one of the most annoying aspects of any small business security protocol. If you’re like most small businesses, you probably have to keep track of dozens of passwords for different sites.
Of course, passwords can be one of the weakest links in any cyber attack prevention plan. NIST compliance and best practices for passwords recommend unique passwords that are at least eight characters long.
Further data protection measures may include multifactor authentication. This is a fancy way of saying more than one code will be required for access—such as a password and a PIN number, for instance.
4. Use Antivirus Software
Don’t neglect firewalls and antiviral measures to secure your network.
Most computers will include some form of antiviral software. But it’s a good idea to have an IT professional recommend and install additional layers of data protection software.
Hardware and software firewalls throw up an important roadblock to invasive malware. And antivirus systems scan your computer and networks to detect any malicious programs that may have gotten past the firewall.
5. Protect Your Wi-Fi Networks
Never rely on default passwords and security systems that come with your Wi-Fi equipment.
Reset the password with your own unique code. A Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA2) code is considered among the most secure.
It’s also important to ensure that your network is hidden. This means that your router doesn’t make your network name readily visible to others, which helps secure your information.
Follow These Steps for Better Data Protection
Data protection is crucial for every business, whether it’s a giant multinational or a small family-run operation. It doesn’t matter how big or small a business is—cyber-thieves don’t discriminate.
So it’s important to protect your business information by following these simple steps to ensure your data remains safe and secure.
We hope this article was helpful. If you’re looking for more great small business advice, please check out the rest of our site.