Is your business vulnerable?
Cyber security is increasingly becoming a major concern among small and medium businesses, not just large corporations. A new Government study found almost half of UK firms were hit by a data breach or cyber attack in 2016 alone, with the average cost being between £75K – £311K for small businesses. It could potentially put you out of business.
What can you do?
There are a number of ways to protect your business against cyber threats. Although some require an in-depth review of your infrastructure to identify vulnerabilities, many security measures can be simple to adopt, like strengthening internal system access through two-factor authentication or IP restrictions. Below are some tips to get started…
Start by looking into how your team accesses systems and files. You can strengthen your company log-ins easily with two-factor authentication (2FA), RSA keys or SSH key files to remove the inherent weakness of user-generated passwords. This is a relatively simple way to strengthen your security measures and make it much more difficult for cyber criminals to gain unauthorised access.
Gain more control of who can access your systems and files with IP and geolocation restrictions or a VPN, depending on your requirements. The former will restrict access to your IP address or a specific location, such as your head office, while the second option is great if you want to restrict access but still need to be able to log-on remotely.
Backups are essential and will protect your important files and systems, but only if they are taken regularly and stored safely. Follow our blog’s advice to create reliable backups. There are many reasons you may need to rely on a backup to recover your files and be able to continue operating, such as natural disasters, equipment failures and cyber attacks.
Storing your servers on-site can place you at risk of theft, natural disasters, equipment failure and unauthorised access. In the event of a power cut, all your systems would go down and may take hours to be restored. It may be beneficial to consider your hosting options and review whether it would strengthen your position to store these in a secure, off-site location or switch to a VPS solution.
Your security measures are only as good as your staff. In many cases, the point of failure lies internally and may have been prevented if staff had available the right resources, procedures and training. Ensure your team are aware of the risks, remain vigilant at all times and help them identify fraud using tools like anti-spam filters.
Protect website communications
Make sure any information that’s entered into your website is safe from interception, modification and eavesdropping by installing an SSL certificate. This will protect your online forms and encrypt your data, in turn protecting both you and your customers. Various certificates are available, depending on the size and nature of your site.
Ensure business continuity
Could your business continue operating if disaster struck? Hosted desktop and VOIP telephony will allow you to work from anywhere at any time, despite equipment being stolen or compromised, while a comprehensive disaster recovery plan will help you prepare for anything and get you back on your feet whatever happens.
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