Hackers (and the tools they use to harm your business) are getting faster, smarter, more efficient, and more sophisticated all the time. This means whether you like it or not, you need to do the same.
In 2015 alone, cybercrime cost businesses a combined $3 trillion all over the world. By 2021, that number is expected to climb to more than $6 trillion, pointing to a problem that is only going to get worse before it gets better. If the best defense is a good offense, you need to take that idea to heart and take the necessary steps today to fend off disaster tomorrow.
With that in mind, there are five easy steps that you can take immediately to help guarantee that your workplace is more secure, allowing you to focus a little less on cybersecurity and more on running your organisation the way it should be.
1. Upgrade Your Existing Software Now
This piece of advice may seem simple, but its ultimate importance cannot be stated enough. Think of software updates as the digital version of a flu shot for your computer. When you get a flu shot, you're essentially upgrading your body's ability to fight off the latest (and most powerful) versions of the Influenza virus.
Software updates are no different, guaranteeing that you're equipped with all of the latest patches, bug fixes, and security upgrades necessary to ward off all the latest strains of viruses, malware, and other cyber threats. If you're using software that can no longer be updated, which means that it is no longer supported by the original developer, it's time to look for an alternative.
You always need to stay one step ahead of hackers and make no mistake, this is one of the major ways to do it.
2. Change Those Passwords
Nobody likes to have to come up with long, complicated passwords filled with numbers, letters, and special characters every couple of months. However, it's critically important since exploiting weak or compromised passwords allows hackers to gain access to your system in the first place.
Get in the habit of changing your passwords at least once every six months, and make sure that all of your employees do it, too.
Along the same lines, always incorporate two-factor authentication when possible. This will make sure that you always need two forms of input to log into your accounts, so even if your actual password is compromised you're still protected as long as your secondary device hasn't been compromised as well.
3. Set up and enforce Standard Operating Procedures
One of the most important ways to guarantee that your workplace is more secure involves coming up with standard operating procedures, or SOPs, for all of your digital devices and sticking with them above all costs. These are rules that all employees, yourself included, need to follow.
Are your employees allowed to use devices with USB sticks? What type of data are they allowed to take home with them? What are your protocols for accessing work email from home? What sites can they go on using the Internet and what sites can't they?
What happens to account authentication once an employee leaves? Your business has Wi-Fi. Do you think of yourself as a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) organisation, or aren't you?
How is device management handled in a field services situation versus when all employees are on-site? These are the types of questions that your SOPs need to answer and the consequences for breaking them need to be just as severe as the potential stakes for getting this wrong.
4. Backup Everything as Often as You Can
As a general rule of thumb, you should always backup your important data to both the cloud and to another secondary, physical form.
All of this should be set up to occur automatically, so you really don't even have to think about it. If your business gets hit by something like a ransomware attack, being able to immediately restore from a current and quality backup is one of the best (and only) chances you have of coming out of the situation unscathed.
5. It's All About Training
At the end of the day, one of the most important things for you to understand is that technology is ultimately only as good as the people who wield it. Therefore, it is absolutely in your best interest to make sure those people are as smart, as forward-thinking, and as experienced as possible.
Ongoing education should be a major priority for your business both in terms of making sure people actually know how to use the tools you're giving them and helping them stay ahead of all the latest threats like suspicious websites and emails. Experts even agree that ongoing employee training is one of the keys to fortifying your cybersecurity defenses, particularly since employee error is one of the major ways that networks become compromised in the first place.
If you're not already making employee education and ongoing training a priority, now would be an excellent time to start.
Lanrex: Because Cyber Security Is Too Important to Ignore
Whether you're in the middle of a major digital transformation (like switching to Dynamics 365) or just want to make sure that your organisation is protected from all of the latest threats, Lanrex is proud to stand by your side every step of the way.
We are committed to being a true security partner for your organisation in every sense of the term, doing our part to help you enjoy all of the benefits of modern technology with as few of the downsides as possible.
If you'd like to find out more information about how to guarantee that your workplace is more secure, or if you have any additional questions that you'd like to discuss, contact Lanrex today.