Protect your company from cyber attacks

Cyber crime can have a significant negative impact on your business if proper precautions are not taken to prevent it. The OCABR has tips to help you keep your businesses information secure.

Cyber crime can have a significant negative impact on your life or business if proper precautions are not taken to prevent it.

Secure your networks and databases

Protect your networks by setting up firewalls and encrypting information. This will help minimize the risk of cyber criminals gaining access to confidential information. Make sure your Wi-Fi network is hidden and the password protected. Make sure to be selective of the information that is being stored in the company databases. Databases can be a great means for companies to have a central location of data and documents, but this does not mean it is favorable to store any and all information. Automatic backing up of company data should be set to be completed either once a day or once a week, depending on the level of activity within your company. Backing up your company’s data will increase the likelihood that with a cyber attack, your company’s data will not be lost completely, which is all too common.

Educate your employees

Talk to your employees about their role in securing and protecting the information of their colleagues, customers, and the company. Have policies set in place so they know what practices are acceptable and unacceptable. Limit the number of users within the company who will have administrative access. This will minimize the amount of programs they will be able to download, therefore, minimizing the risks of downloading viruses and malicious software

Create security policies and practices

Establish practices and policies to protect your company from cyber attacks and provide guidelines for resolving issues if they arise. Make sure to outline how situations will be handled and the consequences if an employee violates the policies. Control physical access to company devices and dispose of them properly. Prevent access to company computers and handheld devices from unauthorized users. Laptops and cellphones are easy targets for cyber theft since they can be misplaced easily or stolen quickly. Reset devices that are being disposed of back to factory setting. Never get rid of a cellphone or laptop without completing this step. Failure to do so could result in company information winding up in the hands of the cyber criminal.

Know how to distinguish between fake antivirus offers and real notifications

Train your employees to be able to recognize fake antivirus warning messages and alert IT as soon as they notice anything questionable occurring (if necessary). Make sure your company has a policy in place for the steps to be taken should an employee’s computer become infected with a virus. Malware is a sneaky program that can obtain information by making its way onto devices via the Internet, social media, email, attachments, and downloads. For example, key-logging malware can track everything the user types on their keyboard. This means cyber criminals could access bank accounts, customer information, passwords, and other company-sensitive information. Make sure to keep your security software up-to-date to help prevent malware from sneaking onto your system and networks.

Inform your customers

Let your customers know the reasons why you collect their personal information and what it is used for. Assure them that your company will not request any sensitive information such as their social security number or their bank account information over unprotected methods of communication, such as through text message or email. Ask them to report suspicious communications.

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