October is Cyber Security Awareness Month: an annual campaign dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of cyber security. It’s a great time to make sure your cyber security practices and policies are up to date. We’ve put together our top tips for businesses when it comes to cyber security: if you’d like to know more, give us a call and we can talk you through how we can help you keep your systems safe.
Train your team
Human error is a major contributor to cyber security breaches: whether it’s clicking on a suspicious link in an email, using an insecure password, or accessing company data through an insecure network, there are lots of ways that staff can unwittingly cause a breach. Make sure your team are kept up to date on your cyber security policy, and consider cyber security training so that everyone is aware of safe practices.
Prioritise good password management
Password management is essential when it comes to protecting your systems. Multi-factor or two-factor authentication (MFA/2FA) is a good place to start: rather than just requiring a password, MFA uses something a user knows, like a password, and something a user has, like a smartphone, to increase security when logging in. Staff should also be aware of good password practices, like avoiding common or easily-guessed passwords, and try to include numbers, symbols and a mixture of upper and lowercase letters.
Ensure software is kept updated
When software hasn’t been updated, it can be vulnerable to cyber attack, so ensure any software you use is kept up-to-date, including any new security patches. If you’re not confident that you can keep tabs on all the necessary updates, outsource this responsibility: we can keep an eye on your systems remotely, ensuring updates are performed as soon as they’re available and monitoring for any breaches.
Back up your data
The best way to protect your business against a data breach is to ensure your data is backed up: this way, even in the unfortunate event of a breach, your systems can be quickly restored and you can resume business as usual. Lost data as a result of security breaches costs businesses millions of pounds every year, so make sure your data is safe with regular backups.
Consider your access policy
Every point of access poses a potential security breach, so limit access to your systems based on necessity. Ensure anyone who has access to sensitive data is properly trained in up-to-date cyber security practices.
Ensure your policies are updated for hybrid working
If any of your team works remotely even part of the time, update your cyber security practices. There are lots of additional considerations when it comes to hybrid or remote working: users are accessing your network remotely, potentially using a public wi-fi connection, or using personal devices. Setting up a VPN connection can allow your team to access your network safely; if you’d like more advice on hybrid working security, get in touch.
We can help with all aspects of IT security, from antivirus and security systems and firewalls to security testing, business continuity planning, and security advice and consultation. We’ll take the time to talk to you about your business needs, and we’ll help you put together a cyber security package that works for you. Contact us to find out more.