It has never been more important for business owners to ensure that they have the most robust security systems in place in order to protect their online data. It is becoming even more prevalent with the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which comes into force in May 2018 and will affect businesses globally, regardless of whether they are located within the EU countries if they hold data on EU citizens.
As we become ever more reliant on digital tools and resources in the workplace, so too have criminals come to rely on gaps in our security management to exploit opportunities and vulnerabilities. If you’re serious about protecting your business, your employees, and your customers, then you need to make sure that you are doing all that you can to strengthen and improve your security on a regular basis. There can be not only terrible repercussions for your business’s reputation if valuable customer data is stolen, but you could also face hefty fines (the GDPR may enforce a fine of 2-4% of your yearly profit) and loss of income. With that in mind, here are the best three ways to ensure that you have the best IT security possible.
Teaching your staff about the importance of online security is one of the most essential things to consider when it comes to strengthening your defenses. Sadly, the vast majority of data breaches are due to human error and lack of awareness, so it’s essential that you train your staff about the variety of elements that will help them to manage data as safely as possible. It can be a regular part of your business management because while it’s important that your employees are aware of the need for basic protocols such as strong passwords and device maintenance, they will also need to be given regular information regarding the latest sophisticated phishing scams. Keeping aware of the evolving trends in cybercrime will go a long way to keeping your business safe. Implementing regular training activities can ensure staff are both aware and informed, and a little effort can go a long way in terms of the security of your business.
Your passwords are a very literal key to your data storage, and as a result, they need to be as strong as possible. There are numerous ways that you can build a strong password and finding the right combination of means is going to be dependent on you. You could opt for making the transition to passphrases that are more difficult to break, or you could choose to go for two-factor verification systems that can be applied to everything from your bank accounts to your social media pages. For those with a large number of passwords to remember, it may be worth making use of a password management system that can keep your passwords safe and secure at all times. Whichever options suit you, make sure that your staff members are constantly aware of the essential nature of a strong password, and they’re not using one of the more common passwords. One simple starter strategy for devising a difficult password is to use a mixture of letters and numbers, as well as devising random words and phrases that will be much harder to guess, compared to personal details or any keywords that relate to your business, for example.
The software that you use can go a long way to protecting your data if used correctly. When combined with the above tips, the software that you make use of can provide some much-needed additional layers of security. If you use resources such as cloud storage, there are tools available that will provide you with even more protection, and if you’re using Amazon Web Services (AWS) for your cloud needs, then you may find that this extensive checklist from Skyhigh will give you all of the relevant information that will keep every area of your data management significantly safer through AWS Cloud security best practices.
Use these methods while making use of updated firewalls and two-factor verification, and you may find that you have made it more trouble than it’s worth for the unscrupulous cyber criminals.