How to Keep Your Business Secure Onlineon 13 June 2018Posted by Sam Abrahams
Today’s business is increasingly moving online. From cloud-based storage to remote workers, most companies are seeing a growing need for good online solutions. At the same time, companies want to reduce the overhead costs that come with maintaining network maintenance and cyber security. This can be a challenge in a time of growing problems with sensitive data. Here are ways to help keep your company secure.
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There are good reasons why more companies are making the move to cloud-based data storage. For example, there are practical problems with trying to maintain in-house computer networks. Computer networks and storage systems are expensive and they must be backed up, upgraded, and expanded on a regular basis. The setup and maintenance of in-house system requires significant, skilled IT expertise that can be costly.
Now many companies are finding that an even more challenging problem is having IT support that can keep up with the ever-changing variety of cyber-attacks companies face. For smaller companies, it is simply not practical for them to retain these types of services in-house. All these factors are leading more companies to choose secure online workspaces that are set up, managed, and secured by experts. This also saves companies from the nightmare of experiencing serious IT problems while their one expert is on holiday and unavailable.
Being able to work away from the office is a growing concern. Even for companies who don’t allow employees to telecommute there are plenty of times when remote access is necessary. Senior managers who must field important issues even during off-hours need access to data and possibly even operational systems. During meetings, the ability to quickly bring up key information from a conference room or remote office can make all the difference. All these factors make cloud-based storage important, but the challenges don’t end there.
One of the biggest issues facing companies is the security of laptops and smartphones. These are regularly used to conduct business but often the security protocols are completely different. Companies who don’t provide employees with computers to use when away from the office may have workers using a variety of different software systems and levels of security on their personal computers. Smartphones provide a unique set of challenges combining both the problem of online access to files and the security of phone calls and texts.
One way to address both of these problems is to make sure key employees only use company-provided computers and smartphones to conduct their work. Standard procedures and security measures should be implemented across all platforms of systems in use. This includes the use of strong passwords and the use of secure networks when accessing online systems.
Although the loss of consumer data makes the news when there is a breach of the security in a major company, information is lost all the time. While the risk of being attacked by a hacker is real, the most common cause of a data breach is not a direct attack. Usually, phishing emails with links that are mistakenly clicked by employees provide the opportunity hackers need to access company data.
This is why employee training is typically the most important way for companies to maintain online security on an ongoing basis. While the traditional employee education efforts might have been focused on acquainting new employees with the company’s rules and guidelines, now many businesses are taking a different approach. Ongoing education is important given the continual evolution of approaches used by hackers. This type of approach can also help to keep cyber security in the forefront of the minds of employees as they go about their workdays. Interactive programmes like quizzes can be more engaging for workers and ensure that they understand the cyber security information they’ve been presented. This can be a huge improvement over a staff meeting where employees might mentally tune out during a key presentation.
Many companies have consolidated their IT teams in a central location or outsourced their IT support. This can have huge cost savings but it can lead employees to wonder who to call when they have concerns. It is important for companies to have simple and quick ways for employees to reach out if they think they may have received a phishing email or encountered another type of cyber security threat. This can help eliminate data breaches before they have a chance to spread.
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