Most of us have heard horror stories about cyberattacks on small business. Data breaches that have cost a business more than money, and the loss of confidential information and the consequent trust of their customers is a worst-case scenario to be avoided at all costs.
Compromised customer credentials are a leading target of attacks, as well as unpatched software and phishing emails. It’s important to teach your team about the common threats today to strengthen your defences. Online security can often be more about people and culture than technology.
Here are some tips for securing your business activities online.
Strong, Secure Passwords
It’s so obvious that many of us forget to actually do this! Change your passwords regularly and keep them secure. This also goes for access passwords to your devices. Where possible, use multi-factor authentication.
Two-factor authentication requires not only a password, but an additional piece of information that only the user knows, such as a physical token on their phone or a security question/answer. Implementing two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security and makes it difficult for hackers to gain access.
Review what You're Sharing
Information and data has high value on the internet. Keep up with your privacy settings on your mobile devices, computers and online profiles.
Back-up Valuable Data
This step is often overlooked. Back up any valuable data to protect against ransomware attacks that hold your information hostage.
Keep Software and Operating Systems Up-to-Date
Try not to ignore update notifications for your software. Software and operating system updates not only provide you with the latest features, but also fix any security holes that have been discovered since the last update. Don't forget your mobile devices, computers, and website (including templates and plugins).
Firewall and SSL
Protections like a firewall and SSL certificate are simple and effective. Customers can trust the security of your website. Ask your hosting provider to set this up.
Use Secure Wifi
You can't trust that a public wifi network is secure. Switch off settings that connect your devices to unsecured networks automatically.
Online security relates to the measures in place that prevent others gaining access to your sensitive information—and that of your customers. Ensuring a secure online operation is often multi-layered. There isn't a single solution to secure your online business against an attack. Instead, it’s common practice to put several different plans in place to safeguard your information from hackers, preferably incorporating the above steps.