4 Ways to Improve IT Security for Your Small Business
Is your business data safe? Are your computers protected from viruses? Do your employees realize just how important IT security is to the success of your business? If you haven’t been asking yourselves these questions, maybe it’s time you start. Security breaches are not only escalating for large companies, but also increasing for small business, where online security tends to be weaker. Don’t become an easy target for hackers. Here are four simple steps to help you defend against cybercrime and avoid an IT disaster.
- Install proper firewalls
While it is not possible to completely protect your business from cyber-attacks, there are several things you can do to help minimize the risk. For starters, you’ll need a solid firewall installed. We don’t mean the basic firewalls that already come with most computers. We are talking about a powerful appliance firewall that will help provide a rock solid data defense.
A firewall will certainly help keep your information safe. But it simply isn’t enough to just have it installed. It will require regular monitoring and maintenance to effectively catch and eliminate threats before they become a serious problem. It is vital that your business’ computers are up-to-date, so make sure all software and programs installed are updated regularly. A properly managed firewall strategy will help you pinpoint possible threats and stop hackers from exploiting weaknesses in your network.
- Use quality anti-virus software
Think your average, run-of-the-mill anti-virus program is going to protect you from sophisticated, malicious programs? Think again. Even using multiple anti-virus software programs on a single computer is not going to provide the layers of protection you’ll need. In order to prevent viruses and safeguard your IT infrastructure, use one, good anti-virus software and keep it constantly updated and monitored.
- Manage email security
Why make things easy for hackers? Help stop online theft by encrypting your company emails. This will help deter cybercriminals by forcing them to try and hack through, yet another layer of protection. Again, this isn’t going to necessarily stop them from breaking in, but it might convince them to move on to easier pickings somewhere else.
- Train your employees
Believe it or not, hackers aren’t the only threat to your precious data. Your employees can also unknowingly (or knowingly) compromise your network by downloading viruses or immobilizing firewalls. As a small business owner, it is your responsibility to prevent employee-related security breaches, helping to stop customer information and intellectual property from falling into the wrong hands.
You can help avoid online threats by limiting employees’ access and instructing them on how to understand the warning signs of cybercrime. First, restrict your IT system to only those employees who absolutely need it. Next, teach employees not to click on suspicious links and pop ups, as well as disregard emails that ask for personal or credit card information. Remember, the better trained your employees are now, the less likely you’ll have to deal with a security catastrophe down the road.
One of the easiest and most effective ways to handle your small business IT security is to use a managed service provider (MSP). They have the knowledge and experience to identify online threats, helping to stop digital thieves from getting their hands on your valuable business information.
To learn more about how an MSP can help secure your business data, contact us today!