It’s not uncommon to hear or read that a business has been affected by an online security breach. Customer personal data is leaked online where malicious users can do what they please with contact information, bank account details, and security passwords or sensitive information. We’d like to think this only happens to the least secure platforms, but large and small businesses can be equally vulnerable.
Recent studies suggest that 43% of malware attacks target small businesses. Hackers use malicious computer programs to steal information, monitor activity, modify systems, and inject spam or blackmail system administrators for money.
If you are a business owner, there are effective ways to diminish the chances you’ll encounter online security threats and breaches. This article covers three proactive measures to prevent security threats before they bring your business to a halt.
1. Keep Your Technology Up-To-Date
Digital technology is the backbone of most businesses today, and that means nearly every aspect of the business is controlled or assisted by software programs, content management systems, customer management systems, plugins, browsers, servers, operating systems and a host of other technologies.
Software vendors regularly release updates that keep your systems protected against current security threats, but they don’t always control when those updates are installed. Your IT department should ensure that every piece of software and technology you use to run your business is kept up-to-date.
2. Enforce Strong Authentications
At one time or another, most people will use the same passwords for different online programs. You might be comfortable with risking your personal devices but don’t risk your customers’ information. Enforce strict authentication and password requirements.
- Use different passwords for every program and device.
- Ensure passwords are strong by using capital and lowercase letters, numbers, symbols, and more than 8 total characters.
- Whenever possible, enable two factor authentication with secure devices like encryption keys and biometrics.
- Only save passwords and login credentials on secure password managers. Google Docs, and Microsoft Word or Excel are not password managers.
3. Limit Admin Access
You may trust everyone in your business or on your team, but that doesn’t mean you need to give them the keys to every door. Permission levels are great for keeping parts of your technology secure and ensuring all of your employees can only access what they need.
- Keep the number of administrators for any program to one or as few as possible, and only use select machines if possible.
- Only log in as an administrator to perform tasks that require that level of access.
- Login information for administrator accounts should only be accessible to administrators.
At Friendly PC, we know that keeping authentications organized and secure can be a job in itself. If you need to up your authentication game for your business, give us a call or send us a message. We’re experts at security, and will do everything in our power and yours to keep your customers and business safe online.