While most businesses hope to one day expand and turn into large corporations, there are advantages to being small. One of them is that it makes you a less attractive target to hackers and other types of bad actors that permeate the web. This means that while a company like Amazon needs to have the biggest security experts in the world on staff to keep their data safe, a small business can say relatively safe by just following a few simple principles.
Your goal as a small business owner isn’t to protect yourself from targeted high-skill attacks. You just need to make sure you are safe from low-skill attacks. The type typically launched by single hackers, who target hundreds of different companies hoping to breach the security of just one or two of them. Here are some tips that will help protect your data from this type of attack.
1 – Two-Factor Authentication
Having two-factor authentication means that a bad actor can’t gain access to your network by simply stealing a password. They would need the password and something else, typically access to one of your employee’s phone or email account, which can greatly reduce the chances of your network being breached.
This type of security solution is important because the average person is not great at setting up and tracking passwords. As of 2019, the most commonly used password in the world was still “123456”. The word “password” ranked in number 4.
There are plenty of two-factor authentication solutions that you can set up with the help of professionals. And having one is much easier than forcing your entire team to change passwords every few months.
2 – Make Sure your Software Stays Updated
Yes, software updates can take time and be annoying, but the alternative is to leave your systems open to low-skill attacks. You need to make sure the corporate computers and phones are always up to date and on the latest security patch.
3 – Employee Training
Basic cybersecurity training for your staff can be handled in a single afternoon, and it will massively reduce the chances of you suffering a data breach. The biggest thing your team needs to worry about is email. Mistakes made over email are still the leading cause of data breaches around the world.
This includes, of course, employees clicking on links they weren’t supposed to. But that is not the only problem. Breaches and leaks also happen because emails get sent to the wrong recipient, which can lead to sensitive customer data being revealed.
4 – Limit Data Access
Access to your company’s data and information should only be given to people who need it, for as long as they need it. The more people can access and modify the company documents, the easier it is for something bad to happen.
Managing who can access what will help you track the source and cause of the breach if one ever does happen. This can make it easier for your company to resume normal operations as soon as possible, without fear of breaches happening again.