When businesses plan for risk, cyber security was not traditionally part of mitigation strategies. Nowadays, when everything is online, all businesses should think about how a cyber-attack might affect them.
In simple terms, cyber-attacks post very high risk to companies. Cyber criminals could steal your money, data, and worst, sensitive information about customers. The resulting damage could be wide and varied. In addition to lost property, you company’s brand name could be permanently tarnished.
Businesses in the IT sector usually plan for cyber security risks. However, other companies should also consider cyber risk aversion, such as implementing the top 8 essentials of the ASD.
Plan for the Worst
Small business owners may not particularly think about cyber-attacks. If you run a retail store, are online hackers something you should really spend money to protect against? If your company use any type of online payment method, then the answer is yes. If your business uses internet-connected computers for anything, then the yes, your company should be protected against a cyber-attack.
It’s highly recommended to implement protective measures with the worst in mind. That is, start protecting online transaction gateways first. You should also ensure that all internal data is well protected. There should be backups in case an attack happens.
Protecting Against Cyber Attacks
There’s not hundred-percent fool-proof method to prevent cyber-attacks. However, there are simple steps your business can take to reduce the chance of a cyber-attack happening.
Some businesses invest in managed security services that can protect all the devices, the cloud, and other digital entryways that a potential attacker may exploit. Expert security providers can also develop a cyber security plan for your business so the protection remains relevant even when the threats escalate.
Hiring outside expertise is highly recommended for companies that are medium sized or larger. It’s worthwhile considering even for smaller businesses, especially the ones that rely on digital infrastructure a lot.
What You Can Do In-House
There are also no-cost simple steps you can take in house to protect your company against a cyber-attack. Here are some suggestions:
- Keep all software updated.
- Don’t let employees bring in their own external devices to plug-in to office computers.
- Use only legitimate versions of software. Avoid cracked versions.
- Limit or completely eliminate online downloads.
- Install a top-rated antivirus program for malware protection.
- Change passwords every three months.
- Make sure the company email suite has excellent spam filtering.
- Limit administrator access.
Training employees in cyber security protection is a must. Come up with a company-wide password policy to prevent some of the more common types of attacks.
Negligence and ignorance are the primary reasons for businesses being at risk for cyber-attacks. Consider the case of Sony Studios, which was infamously hacked several years ago. Later analysis reports revealed that negligent cyber security practises easily allowed malicious actors to enter the internal system.
Don’t underestimate the risk a cyber-attack poses to your business. A hacking can happen even if your business is tiny and unknown. Hackers look for lootable cash or data anywhere they could. So don’t keep the doorway wide open for thieves to come in. Invest in a plan to protect your company’s digital infrastructure today.