The changing nature and innovative trends of digital technology means it has become heavily incorporated into all aspects of our everyday lives, including business. However, this has meant that we are now more prone to potential cyber attacks, and business owners are not an exception.
This year has seen the biggest reported hacks in cyber history. Two years ago, hackers stole 500 million users’ data from Yahoo accounts – including eight million user accounts based in the UK – but the hack was only made public last month.
Other huge companies have been affected by cyber security breaches in recent years, including Dropbox, Myspace, TK Maxx, EBay, AOL and Ashley Madison.
Even those these are major companies, businesses of any size including SMEs should do everything to ensure that these hacks do not happen, because all computer systems are vulnerable.
Unfortunately, many SMEs do not make cyber security a priority. Andy Patel, senior manager for technology outreach at F-Secure, said: “SMEs typically don’t allocate resources to cyber security, and they allocate very few resources to IT. This leaves them open to attack in a variety of ways. A cyber security incident is likely to cost an SME proportionally more to recover from than a well-prepared company.”
In order for an SME to be fully protected from any potential attacks, business owners need to be prepared and take various measures in order to ensure that the risks of a compromised cyber system are reduced.
There are various ways a business owner can do this:
Use two-step authentication
If your business requires consumers to use an account – i.e. for emails or for purchasing products or services – then it is important to set up a two-step authentication process, which requires the individual logging in to add access details at various points. It’s a great way to stop hackers from easily accessing personal details and sensitive information.
Use anti-virus software
This is a must. Using anti-virus software helps to detect viruses, Trojan horses and malware, and they also help to keep these issues at bay, offer extra protection for your business’ computer and IT system, as well as encrypting your data.
Train your staff on cyber attacks
Everyone working at your company should take responsibility for ensuring the safety and security of personal data. You may have an IT specialist whose job it is to do this but minimizing the risk of security breach requires a team effort.
Complete regular scans
Ensuring the security and protection and private data is not a one-off task. It’s something that requires regular checks and maintenance. Always scan your business’ cyber system and make sure you stay up to date with the latest in computer technology.
Beware of the threats to your security and watch out. Hackers are always attempting new techniques in order to unlawfully access your data system.