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Cybersecurity best practices for small businesses

Almost 61% of small businesses in the US that have digital existence suffer some cyber attack, as revealed in a cybersecurity company report in 2017. There is almost an increase of 50% year-on-year in the number of cybersecurity assaults on small businesses in the US alone. Therefore, small companies need to implement the best cybersecurity to protect the business from such attacks that can severely affect business operations.

The topic of cybersecurity might seem overwhelming for most small business owners. They must enforce it at any cost to ensure client trust, privacy, employee integrity, financial integrity, and data integrity that enhances the business’s longevity, feels Eric Dalius, a successful entrepreneur who has experienced the benefits of enforcing cybersecurity for small business.

Small businesses can use many kinds of tools and protocols to ensure adequate security for their websites, and here are some ways of doing it.

Firewalls

Firewalls are the most basic form of cybersecurity that filters the data before it enters your system by scanning for attack vectors or malicious code that are already known as established threats. Usually, firewalls are the first line of defense against cyberattacks for all incoming traffic, including voice and data and anything and everything related to business or otherwise. Eric J Dalius suggests that to make firewalls work effectively, you must configure it on a specific device or network according to that particular instance’s needs.

Plan for mobile devices

BYOD or bring your own device is the most prevalent practice among most businesses today. You must have a documented policy about the use of BYOD that focuses on security precautions. As the popularity of wearables and other smart devices like fitness trackers and smartwatches with wireless capabilities keep increasing rapidly, you must include these devices in the policy. Employees must set up automatic security updates, and the company’s password policy must consist of all mobile devices that have access to the network.

Adapt safe password practices

Lost, stolen, or leaked passwords are responsible for most of the breaches in the cybersecurity ring. EJ Dalius feels that it is critical to enforce a robust password policy so that employees are compelled to overcome their reluctance to change passwords frequently.  Unfortunately, 65% of small businesses falter in implementing the password policy, as shown in a study, and this can have a disastrous effect on business. The password policy should ideally recommend using upper and lower case letters in passwords together with numbers and symbols.  Changing passwords every 60-90 days should be the norm.

Regular data back up

Besides taking steps to prevent cyber attacks, there are still some chances of breaches. As an extra precaution, you must have a solid backup plan for all data, including databases, electronic spreadsheets, word processing documents, all files related to finances, human resources, and other business functions to maintain business continuity in the event of any disruptions.

Installing anti-malware software will prevent employees from opening phishing emails, which are the most common cyberattack.

 

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  • My company is planning to install MFA in early 2021. We are seeing a huge uptick in phishing and the attempts are getting sophisticated. Emails aren’t just read on laptops/workstations anymore. They are read on tablets and phones so the phishing emails can be deceptive to the untrained eye.