Millions of data records are exposed each year through breaches and cyber attacks. Many of these result from businesses and organizations that do not take adequate care of the data they store. This could be companies that keep credit card and purchase information, charities with donor data, or healthcare facilities with patient histories and data.
If your business or organization is the source of a data breach, then there could be massive repercussions. For one, the people whose data was exposed could bring a lawsuit against you. You may also have violated laws and regulations about data storage. Plus, the loss your organization suffers to its reputation could be catastrophic. Therefore, you must do whatever you can to keep your organization cybersecure. Here’s a guide to how to keep your company data safe.
When you think of hacking, you probably think of a shadowy person tapping away at their keyboard to break some sophisticated firewall and access sensitive data. While this is how it looks in movies and television, the truth is much blander. Most cyber-attacks take the form of emails that carry damaging files. The receiver opens a malicious email, downloads the file, and then the entire network is compromised. Your team needs to understand how dangerous emails can be and what a suspicious one looks like. If they are even in doubt about an email, then they should delete it.
The other way criminals can access sensitive data is by obtaining someone’s password. They can do this in various ways, but one of the most common is social engineering. They will find out information about people and then use that information to try and guess passwords. For example, a social media post might ask for everyone’s favorite childhood cartoon or the name of their first pet. They then use variations to try to access various portals.
Passwords should always be long, random, and have a mixture of numbers, letters, and characters. This makes it harder for employees to remember them, making your network more secure. The randomness also means that even if a criminal accesses one portal, they won’t be able to use the same password to access another.
To add another level of security, you can implement multi-factor authorization for all your portals that store confidential information. This means that as well as needing a password, a user will need to input a code sent to the primary user's phone. This means that someone who wants access must have a password that is hopefully random but also be physically nearby with the correct device. As you can imagine, this can be a very tough protocol for hackers to beat. You can contact IT services in Corpus Christi to have this service set up properly for you for any portal you need to be protected.
Keep Up With Software Updates
Too many people ignore the software update alerts they get regularly. Whether it’s because they don’t want to reboot their device or because everything is working fine, those people just do not want to take that step to update. However, this can be dangerous. Software updates serve many purposes, including upgraded performance and providing a better user experience. However, the most important is that they also install security patches. As a result, software providers discover gaps in their security that thieves could exploit. If you don’t update your software, you will leave yourself and your network vulnerable.
Proper Data Disposal
Whenever you throw out a device or no longer need stored information, there is a risk of it being exposed to the public. For example, if you have some old hard drives, the information on them can still be accessed. If you send them to landfills, then they are open to anyone taking them. Make sure that hard drives and electronics are completely destroyed before disposing of them. You should also shred sensitive documents so that nobody can read what they said, and they cannot be taped back together. Do not take chances.
When you get up from your workspace, put your screen to sleep with password protection. You should never leave printed items sitting at the printer where anyone could see them. Your documents should be shredded at the end of the day, and you should have at least a drawer that can be locked securely. You never know when a visitor or someone posing as a contractor might come by and be able to access your physical documents or your computer workspace. Be diligent and accept that you must enter your password every time you return to your desk.
Don't take chances with cyber security. Even one misstep could severely damage your financial outlook. Businesses are losing millions of dollars all the time in the United States, and you don’t want to be the next victim.