5 cybersecurity basics every business owner should know

If you look at the news closely, you’ll soon realize that data breaches are surprisingly common. At the heart of each breach, there’s usually a missed opportunity to keep that data more secure. If you don’t want to face financial losses because of a cyberattack, it’s time to learn more about cybersecurity basics. 

Create strong passwords

Did you know that 61% of people use the same passwords across multiple websites? In an era of data leaks, that’s a dangerous tactic. If one of your employees uses the same password on their My Fitness Pal account as they do for their work one, cybercriminals could gain access.

To create stronger passwords, use a blend of letter cases, numbers, and special characters. Don’t use the same passwords across multiple sites. It’s also a good idea to change your passwords periodically.

Produce a security plan

Operating without an IT security plan is risky. At a minimum, you and your employees need to know what data is confidential. You also need to identify where you’ll store and protect it.

Make sure everyone takes the same approach to data security. And review your plan once a year to keep it strong. The tactics cybercriminals use are always changing, so your approach needs to alter too.

Educate your employees

If you’re going to educate your employees about data safety, you need to go all the way. Teach them how to recognize social engineering and phishing too. As one in 25 branded emails is a phishing email, this is an area you need to closely scrutinize.

Take some time to research the latest scams and keep your employees up-to-date with them too. By forwarning them of potential risks and appointing someone to report those risks to, you could avoid costly mistakes.

Create a backup strategy

Data theft isn’t the only way for you to lose important information. If your hardware or servers are damaged, you may lose data that way too. 

When you lose a lot of data at once, it has a negative impact on your business. You may be perceived as untrustworthy by your clients and customers. Additionally, if your work depends on that data, it’ll cost a lot of money to return to your previous operational state. To prevent these issues, use cloud storage with servers in a different geographical location to your own.

Perform software updates

If you’ve ever rolled your eyes at the thought of performing yet another software update, now’s the time to stop. Software updates are introduced to patch vulnerabilities in the software you’re using. Unfortunately, software producers can’t see those vulnerabilities until their products are out in the public domain.

In addition to responding to software updates immediately, check for them periodically. You should also ask your employees to perform updates across any devices they use for work too. By taking a robust approach, you’ll patch the vulnerabilities that could allow cybercriminals in.

From strong password creation to software updates, following SMB cybersecurity basics isn’t too tricky. By introducing each one to your business, you’ll achieve a decent level of security. If you’re looking for something more complex, consult a professional who can help you find other solutions too.