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Cyber Security Tips for Small and Medium Business

Sam Fernandes 714 02-Jul-2019


Nowadays, keeping business information secure is the number one issue of any business. Because of the increasing security breaches on numerous companies, data security against unauthorized intrusion is in everyone's mind. Whether large or small, IT security is the greatest challenge that the organizations are facing today. The impact of the security threat is even more critical when it comes to small or medium-sized enterprises. Cyber criminals enjoy targeting small business generally because SMBs cannot afford to enforce powerful security protocols. Nothing can be hundred percent safe, but simultaneously SMEs can advance the protection environment by gaining a powerful knowledge of their external internet presence and ensuring it is secure by conducting penetration testing and minimizing exposure by taking action such as constantly updating security patches.

What is Data breach and how it occurs?

Data breach is an incident in which sensitive, protected or private information may have been viewed, stolen or used by an unauthorized person to do so. The most prevalent notion of data breach is an attacker hacking into a network to steal sensitive information. A number of industry regulations and government compliance laws necessitate strict governance of sensitive or personal information to prevent data breaches. It's a situation where data from your business or organizations is stolen. When we check into the company database and discover all data is gone, all client documents, logs, billing data have been compromised. Then it is evident that your company has become a victim of a cyber-attack data breach.

General Causes of Data Breaches

Protecting sensitive data is critical to a company's lifeline. Do you know what are the most prevalent causes of information breaches?

• Internal threats such as accidental breach (employee error) or deliberate breach (employee misuse): this can happen when employees handling sensitive data do not adequately understand security protocols and processes. Data breach can also happen as a result of a mental mistake when an employee sends documents to an incorrect recipient.

• Physical loss or theft of machines is one of the most popular causes of data breaches: this is probably the most basic of the common causes of data breaches. That being said, there are many distinct ways this can happen. It could be that any of your laptop, external hard drive, or flash drive has been harmed, robbed, or misplaced.

• Weak security controls often become top concerns to protect the data of an organization: inaccurately managing access to applications and different types of data can result in employees being able to view and transmit information they don't need to do their jobs. Another big concern is the weak or stolen password. When weak passwords protect equipment such as laptops, tablets, cell phones, computers and email systems, hackers can readily break into the system. This provides subscription information, private and economic information, as well as sensitive business data.

• Vulnerabilities in the operating system and application: it is a severe safety concern to have outdated software or web browsers.

Tips & Tricks to Avoid Data Breaches

It can be challenging to get clear, precise data about what really happens when a data breach occurs in the midst of the chaos and the hype. While data breaches are definitely a complicated problem, equipping yourself with basic understanding of them can assist you navigate the news, manage the aftermath, and safe your information as best you can. The accelerating frequency and magnitude of data breaches are a clear indication that organizations need to prioritize the security of private data.

Latest developments such as adopting the cloud, deploying BYOD etc. increase the probability of cyber threat. Ignorance of employees is also one of the main concerns. Hackers are well conscious of these vulnerabilities and are managing themselves to exploit them. There's no need to worry, particularly if you're a small business, but it is imperative to take a decision. Make yourself difficult to get targeted and keep your business info secure with these tips.

Here are the top 5 tips for Preventing Cyber Threat

1. Encrypt your information: Data encryption is an excellent system for preventive control. If you encrypt a database or file, you can't decrypt it unless you have or guess the right keys, and it can take a lot of time to guess the right keys. Managing encryption keys needs the same effort as managing other preventive controls in the digital world, such as access control lists, for instance. Someone requires to frequently review who has access to what information and revoke access for those who no longer need it.

2. Choose a security that suits your business: Cracking even the safest companies with elaborate schemes is now far greater than ever. Thus, adopt a managed security service provider that can cost-effectively deliver a flexible solution and provide a smooth upgrade path.

3. Educate staff: Educate staff on the proper handling and protection of sensitive information. Keep employees notified about threats through precise e-mails or at regular IT expert-led conferences.

4. Deploy Security Management Strategy: Cyber-attacks are now extremely structured so organizations need to create a strategic approach so that your entire environment operates as an integrated defense, detecting, preventing and responding to attacks seamlessly and instantly.

5. Install anti-virus software: Anti-virus software can protect your systems from attacks. Anti-virus protection scans your computer and incoming email for viruses and then removes them. You should keep your anti-virus software updated to deal with the 'bugs' circulating the Internet. Most anti-virus software involves a function to download updates automatically when you're online. Also, make sure that the software continuously runs and checks your system for viruses, particularly if you are downloading files from the Web or checking your email.

Actions or Measures That Can Be Taken If Any, Suspected Malicious Attack in Your Network

• If the unidentified file is downloaded, the first stage is to delete the file. Disconnect your system from the network and have IT run a full system sweep to assure there are no traces remaining.

• Businesses must have central administration capacities on their local and cloud servers. Controlling which users have access to which files / folders on the server assures that important business data can only be accessed by authorized people.

• Whenever a key logger is identified on a computer, IT should reset password on all associated accounts instantly.

• Backup all company files in a remote cloud server. If disaster recovery is needed, all files backed up in the cloud can be imported back to the local server to avoid complete data loss.

A Perfect Cyber Security Solution Involves:

• Identifying what assets need to be protected.

• Examining threats and risks that could influence those assets or the entire business.

• Identifying what safeguards need to be in position to cope with threats and safe assets.

• Tracking safeguards and assets to avoid or handle security breaches.

• Responding to cyber security issues as they happen.

• Upgrading and adjusting to safeguards as necessary.

Every day, organizations are under attack on various fronts, and understanding that data breaches can arise from various sources enables for a more extensive security and response plan. Never believe that your data is secure because you have the greatest electronic protection or because you are not using POS terminals. Criminals want your data, and they're going to attempt to get it.

Sam Fernandes

Sam Fernandes

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