Even a modest data breach can create serious problems that business owners cannot afford to take lightly. By some estimates, small businesses are the target of more than 40 percent of all online attacks. From providing staff and employees with the additional training in order to avoid any bad habits that may lead to security concerns to staying informed regarding the new threats that may be just over the horizon, business owners would be wise to take whatever steps may be necessary in order to enhance their level of digital security.
Consequences of a Breach
From the largest and most high-profile breaches to situations where business owners may not even be aware that their accounts or information may become compromised, calculating the true cost of a breach can often be difficult. In addition to more tangible instances that may involve the theft of funds or loss of assets, long-term damage to the brand or image of a business can often be quite costly. Consumers who have reason for heightened concern regarding their personal, account or financial information are far more likely to take their business elsewhere. Failing to address digital security concerns could end up sending the wrong message to potential customers or prospective clients.
Common Causes of a Data Breach
There are a number of issues which may create vulnerabilities or lead to an increased risk of a breach. Users who visit potentially dangerous sites or that download unsafe file attachments may be a more serious liability than many employers realize. Failing to utilize or properly configure network firewalls and other security software is another issue that should be always be addressed without delay. From more secure policies concerning user passwords to the resources and services that will allow businesses to benefit from real-time monitoring of their network and applications, there are plenty of ways to reduce the risks associated with unauthorized user access or malicious software applications.
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Assessing Current Security Needs
Failing to spot an underlying vulnerability in time can prove to be nothing short of disastrous. Failing to develop a clear picture regarding current security needs and concerns may complicate efforts to seek out the most effective solutions. For businesses who lack technical expertise or that have limited experience in dealing with digital security concerns, seeking assistance from a professional is often the best approach to take. Arranging for a third-party contractor or IT specialist to assess the network and digital applications that small businesses utilize each day may turn up multiple issues that would have otherwise escaped notice. Possessing greater insight and clarity regarding their current situation and most pressing needs can help to ensure that small business owners are able to take more appropriate and effective action.
Dealing with Underlying Vulnerabilities
There are numerous situations that may contribute to a potential breach. Simply finding and identifying the vulnerabilities that may lead to a breach may be of limited benefit in the event that such concerns are not properly addressed. Efforts, such as providing employees with additional training, taking steps to secure any mobile devices that may be used to access the network and ensuring that any security applications that are in use have been properly configured can make a considerable difference. Speaking with a lawyer or other legal professional in order to determine the risk, level of exposure or secondary consequences of a breach may also be beneficial.
Staying Informed Regarding New Trends and Emerging Threats
As technology continues to grow more and more sophisticated, a greater range of digital security concerns may arise. Failing to keep tabs on the latest trends and developments shaping the world of digital security is a common mistake, one that is made by countless business owners. Even a security strategy that may be effective by today's standards could create problems for those who fail to update their software and reassess the effectiveness of their efforts from time to time.