Cyber security basics you should know for your business

The internet is a huge part of everyone’s daily lives and a large part of having a business. There is worldwide use of the internet so people save a lot of private information somewhere on the internet, especially for business use. Many have their passwords saved on their browser which can be stolen and used to steal something of value from you. As a business, you have a lot of client information or confidential information that must be kept safe at all times. Because of this, it is crucial to do your part to protect your information and make sure you are using all of the resources to keep your info out of hackers’ hands. I will list below, tips and why they are important ranging from encrypting your devices, to IT consulting.

8 tips for security

01 Add passwords to every device

Make sure to add a password to all devices you are using for your business in case one is stolen or lost, so no one is able to get into the device and steal your information. For example, do not neglect to add a password to a laptop, desktop, tablet, or phone that is used for your business information. Even if there is not much confidential information, just an email logged in can be used against you if someone were to access that account.

02 Unique passwords

You and all employees should use strong passwords that are difficult to guess. Do not use your name, birthday, company name, or email as a password for any applications used for the business. They should also be unique and long to make them even more difficult to guess. 

03 Install an anti-virus software application

There are many applications you can install on your laptop or desktop that block hackers from stealing your information. Here are the top options that you should consider installing:

  • McAfee
  • Norton
  • Total AV
  • Bitdefender

These are currently the top 4 most popular software. They all have different benefits and come with different options for purchase. McAfee is the most popular and is a great option for businesses. They have different plans to choose from and can cover up to 10 devices per value pack at $54.99 so it would be a beneficial investment for your business. This option offers password protection, web protection, anti-spy, file shredder, online security experts available, and more.

04 Update applications

It is important to update all the applications you use for optimum protection. If you use applications for any finances or any containing confidential information, it is best to continue updating since the information on that app is valuable to your company.

When an application is updated, many times it is bug fixes that are changed that can help ensure the protection of all the information you have saved on the app. For example, the app developers could have found a loophole that had to be fixed to make sure no one can use it to their advantage to hack users’ information.

05 Be cautious of wireless networks

There are multiple steps you can take to protect your wireless network to make sure all your computer and phone use are protected and hidden from others. 

The first thing to do is change the default password from the router you purchase. Turn it into a strong password because the default passwords can be found online. Another step you can take is adding a firewall to your network router for extra protection. There is either a hardware firewall or a software firewall. The difference is that a hardware firewall is a physical appliance, and a software firewall operate is built into your computer’s operating system (on an application).
Another thing to be careful of is using a public wifi network. A great way to be extra cautious while using public wifi is for you and your employees to connect to the internet using a VPN which stands for a virtual private network. This ensures a safe connection between the computer and the internet you are using. It makes sure no information is shared with others on the network and makes sure no one can hack your computer.

06 Encrypt your devices

Another step you can take is to encrypt your devices. This is important to do in case of a device being stolen. This means adding a password for your hard drive to protect all data stored in it. If someone has stolen your device, they can take out the hard drive and insert it into another device to look at the data, but encrypting the device will make it impossible for them to view your information without knowing the password.

07 Multi-factor authentication

Many applications and websites give you the option to have multiple authentication methods to sign in to your account. This is a great way to ensure only you and your employees access your accounts. After turning this on, when someone attempts to sign in, it will ask you to approve the sign-in by asking if it is you. You can approve by answering a call, text, or receiving a code through email or text. It depends on which option you choose, and which are available on the website or application. This is an extremely important factor to add and is super simple and easy to set up. Just be sure to add your correct contact information, and add multiple if possible.

08 IT consulting

With the advance in technology, it is important to keep up with new advances. To learn more about all things technology, consider investing in IT consulting services for any and all things tech. Learn more about anything from designing software systems to sourcing IT hardware that best fits your business needs. They will make sure you have efficient systems, help you find and analyze security threats, and more. Hire an IT consultant to help your business thrive with the use of IT.

All businesses big and small should do as much as possible to protect their information to avoid any large issues or losses. As a business owner, you must make sure all of your data and anything confidential is safe and kept away from outside eyes. If you are not a business owner, these steps can also be used for personal use, or you can share this with your employer if you notice an absence of these precautions.