When news breaks that mega companies like Target and national banks had been the victim of a huge cyber security breach, business owners and executives around the country immediately started to wonder how vulnerable their companies were.
That's a good question, and an extremely important one in the digital age. It goes without saying that very large businesses, and those with extensive e-commerce operations, need to have multiple security layers in place to protect customer data. But, even if you don't have millions of customers, or billions at stake, there are a handful of important tips you should follow to prevent data loss and theft:
1. Back up everything, and back it up often. Regardless of whether the data loss comes from a hacker or power surge, you should have backup copies of your most important files in place and ready to use.
2. Update your hosting software frequently. The kinds of cyber attacks that affect most small businesses aren't sophisticated. Instead, they rely on known exploits in software packages like WordPress. By updating yours frequently, you can often close the door to would-be opportunistic thieves.
3. Change passwords regularly and don't use obvious words or phrases. We've all heard this advice before, but it still holds true. In the same way that you shouldn't make your pin number "1234" (something that nearly one out of 10 people do), your company's passwords shouldn't be easy for automated software to guess.
4. Restrict access to trusted personnel. In a lot of small businesses, anyone borrowing the owner’s or manager's password can get access to anything on the company website, or in databases. That's a prescription for disaster. Set different security levels so that employees can access what's needed, but not more.
5. Keep an eye on your technology. Often, you can prevent digital break-ins before they happen, simply by paying attention to things like the number of failed logins to your website or server. The closer you’re watching things, the less opportunity thieves have to catch you napping.
Feel like your company’s online security isn't what it should be? Talk to a member of the Kinetik team today to see how we can help.