All over the news, especially recently, we've seen what can happen to companies that have lax computer security. A successful cyber-attack costs businesses not only money, but their reputations.
Companies who want to avoid paying those high prices should routinely check their computer security to ensure devices, networks, and data are secure. While it's true that taking the time to do it right can be an involved process, it's also never too early to get started so we thought we'd share some quick tips to begin down the path of making sure your computer security is up to date:
1. Take Stock of Assets
The longer your business has been operating, the more assets it gains. While generally a sign of success or profitability, adding hardware, software, and even accounts can increase cybersecurity risks.
You should periodically assess your assets to determine whether updates or upgrades are required, including those that will bring your business up to spec with the most recent security protocols or industry standards.
Asset assessment may also highlight items that should be removed, rearranged, or limited. As a bonus, changes that result from these appraisals could improve operations.
Phishing attacks, which can occur via text message, phone call, or email, provide a much easier way for people to gain unauthorized access to a system or data. After all, there's no need to hack when employees freely give up that information.
Understanding the risk of social engineering attacks and even offering security awareness training for your employees can prevent the real thing from happening.
3. Perform a Risk Assessment
Any software with weaknesses leaves you vulnerable if hackers will hunt for those loopholes. Not understanding your risk can lead to catastrophic consequences, including a data breach.
A physical security walk-through might seem simple, but it's an effective tool to determine how easily someone can gain physical access to your devices or data without hacking.
Devices should always require passwords, and if possible, separate user controls. No door or gate that protects sensitive information should be insecure. Instead, companies should require that users perform a scan or enter a passcode at access points.
Someone who can access a physical space could be thwarted if devices requires multi-factor authentication and sensitive information is securely stored.
5. Get Professional Computer Security Services
Companies can easily overlook network vulnerabilities because those who aren't IT professionals don't know what to look for. Professional security services consist of multiple components.
For example, penetration testing puts the network through attacks similar to what hackers would do to identify vulnerabilities. Endpoint security protects you from malicious software, while enterprise-level firewalls keep your networks safe from outsiders. All these services work together to protect your business’s technology.
6. Verify Backup Data
On top of implementing stronger security measures, it's necessary to ensure that your data is protected in the unlikely event of a successful cyber-attack or unforeseen disaster. Backups which follow a regular schedule and are tested ensure your data remains safe and accessible at all times.
By following these six tips, you can better protect your computer systems from hacking attempts, social engineering, and even natural disasters. You can ensure your computer security and organization will be ready to withstand even the greatest threats.