cyber security

Cybersecurity Mistakes Small Businesses Should Avoid

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Despite the unparalleled convenience and efficiency that the internet provides, it’s still ultimately a dangerous place. It’s not always fun and games, and malicious individuals might attempt to penetrate your business’ defenses for valuable data. Even just one mistake or backdoor, and they can gain entry to your database and cost you thousands, if not outright destroy your reputation. Cybersecurity is something that cannot be ignored by businesses and establishments, mainly for this reason.

But the problem is that many smaller businesses and start-ups either don’t take this issue seriously or do not have enough resources to address it. And another sad thing is that many entrepreneurs and start-up leaders fail to realize that they’re committing cyber security mistakes that put their company at more risk! Fortunately, that doesn’t have to be a death sentence, as many practical steps and actions can be taken to minimize the risk. Let’s take a look at a few.

Complacency

A large part of cybersecurity is simply making sure you’re not complacent with it. Don’t think that “everything will work out eventually” because chances are it won’t. And keeping it in its current state might even open it to potential security threats. Here are a few signs of complacency that you should stop the moment you spot it.

  • Failing to update software

The only way you can make sure that your system is always up to date (especially your security software) is to make an effort to keep it updated. It’s primarily your IT personnel’s responsibility to keep any software packages updated, but making sure by checking it yourself will help. Software updates are often notified, so make sure to update it as soon as there’s a notification.

  • Expecting free antivirus will cut it

Frankly, free antivirus is only there to protect your system from the basic level of viruses and malware. Rarely anything up to par comes for free, so don’t skimp on the antivirus. It’s your first defense against malware, after all. Coordinate with your personnel or cyber security professionals to guarantee that all your bases are covered.

  • Entrusting control over to one IT person

Don’t make the mistake of entrusting the entirety of your system to one person only. Make it so that there are levels of verification necessary. It’s not that you don’t trust your staff, but human error plays a large part in reducing the security of your system, and if something goes wrong, you have a team of people who can look at it objectively and assess the root cause.

Oversights

employees

Other than complacency, oversight is another major issue when it comes to cybersecurity. This time, it’s not that you think the system is enough, but there’s a genuine oversight in protocols. Always do things by the book, or at least try to accomplish the fundamentals of cybersecurity. Here are a few things you need to remember.

  • Not training employees on security

The biggest backdoor in most databases isn’t through the computer itself but staff. Often, hackers and malicious individuals will pretend to be someone from the company and request sensitive information under the guise that it’s needed for an official process. Train your staff to spot and identify situations like this, and remind them to follow the correct verification protocol.

  • Not backing up data

A major oversight that’s relatively common is in data backup. It’s crucial to employ network micro-segmentation solutions to have an automatic backup procedure should anything go wrong. And in the event of a breach, having such a system will immediately isolate the source of the breach to prevent it from spreading further.

  • Not making an effort to be aware of cybersecurity threats

Enlist the help of security professionals and their “white hackers” to try and penetrate your system to figure out weak spots and backdoors. You need to be aware of your system’s weak points, which can only be revealed through a breach. However, you don’t want an actual breach happening, so do it in a controlled environment by identifying cybersecurity threats.

  • Being reactive instead of proactive

Instead of being reactive, that is, instinctively reacting to dangers and threats, be proactive. Consciously be defensive of critical data and information. It’s your business’s bread and butter, and a security breach might significantly affect your business’s reputation- and worse of all, bring legal ramifications. Don’t wait for a breach to happen; take actions to strengthen your servers and databases.

Businesses need to be vigilant and protective of their online data. It’s the most accessible form of information, but there are always ways to protect it. Protecting your data and information is paramount to keeping your business alive and flourishing.

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