As cybersecurity evolves, so do the skills of cybercriminals, whose cyberattack strategies keep improving. You should not become complacent even if you’ve implemented certain cybersecurity safety protocols to protect your company’s data from malicious hackers. In particular, if you’re a startup or medium-sized business, cybercriminals will assume that you don’t place much emphasis on cybersecurity or don’t have enough resources for a strong defense.
How can you protect your company’s data from cyberattacks? To prevent your company from becoming another victim of cyberattacks, here’s a guide on cybersecurity practices.
1. Disable all unused services
You can beef up your company’s cybersecurity protocols by disabling applications, user credentials, logins, and products that you are not using. While you may overlook this and think it won’t impact your business, failure to do so exposes you to unauthorized access and external attacks.
According to RealSec, having a hardware security module shuts down every user account associated with old hardware or applications. In addition, former employees’ credentials should be disabled as soon as possible since these individuals are potential insider threats to your organization.
If a credential or application hasn’t been shut down, it exposes you to a potential data breach. Hackers are aware of this and may use this security lapse to gain access to your company’s sensitive information.
2. Conduct continuous cyber security assessments
By conducting continuous risk assessments, you can ensure that your network and systems are protected from cybersecurity threats. Knowing your current cybersecurity status will enable you to pinpoint your systems’ strengths and how they can be improved. In addition, it allows you to identify possible weaknesses and determine how they might be remedied.
A proper cybersecurity risk assessment ensures you don’t waste your organization’s hard-earned money on measures that won’t yield any positive results. Additionally, it saves your time that would have been spent trying to secure the environment without any noticeable results.
3. Conduct annual staff awareness training
The first line of defense against a cyberattack is your employees. Cybercriminals systematically target them with scams such as business email compromise (BEC) messages, social engineering, and phishing. To prevent your employees from falling victim to cyber-attacks, you should ensure they receive constant cybersecurity training. With proper training, it becomes much more difficult for hackers to gain access to a company’s network and systems.
Cyberattacks can be greatly reduced by training your employees regularly. Due to better understanding of cybersecurity, the employees now understand how every action they take affects the company’s security posture.
4. Ensure your hardware and software are up-to-date
It is the goal of cybercriminals to find weaknesses in current systems and networks to exploit. The malicious persons will eventually discover a vulnerability they can exploit to gain access to your system.
As a result, you should make sure your hardware, software, devices, applications, and operating systems are always up-to-date with the latest security patches. Additionally to the breaches and threats, you need to familiarize yourself with the latest compliance regulations.
Using tools that continuously look for vulnerabilities and fix them is a great way to make sure your software and hardware are always up-to-date. This optimizes performance and saves you time at the same time. Even with the endpoint management, which is cost-effective and convenient, you still need to verify that the software and hardware are up-to-date.
5. Support your cybersecurity staff
Cybersecurity staff teams complain that their requests are ignored Disclaimerand they do not receive the necessary funding. Because most people in management don’t have a technical background in IT, they don’t understand the cybersecurity risk brought forward by the security team. Therefore, they ignore the recommendations made by the cybersecurity staff to try to keep the company’s operational costs low.
It is the negligence of the senior board members that increases your company’s vulnerability to cyberattacks. The best way to prevent such an outcome is to follow the cybersecurity suggestions made by your security team, since cybersecurity affects all the company’s departments. Furthermore, make sure these cybersecurity employees have the necessary funds to implement proper cybersecurity measures.
6. Back up your data regularly
There is still a risk that your company will be hacked even after implementing the necessary cybersecurity protocols. As a result, you should always back up your crucial data, including;
- Files related to finances
- Spreadsheets in electronic form
- Documents created with Word
- Files related to accounts payables and receivables
- Files related to human resources
You should store backup data in a separate location that’s safe from fires and floods. Clouds are usually the best place to store data store this crucial data. As well as making sure all your data is backed up, make sure everything is working properly.
7. Establish a password update policy
If you want to prevent hackers from accessing your system, strong passwords are essential. To maintain the company’s system, these passwords should also be changed periodically. If not, a persistent hacker may eventually crack one of your employee’s passwords and gain access to your company’s sensitive information.
As many employees, in most cases, won’t change their passwords voluntarily, you need to enforce strong password policies. Although this might be somewhat acceptable considering the frantic schedule, you shouldn’t allow this lack of urgency if you’re serious about safeguarding your company’s valuable information.
Cybercriminals are becoming more creative every day. Cyber defense has a relatively short lifespan. Consequently, you need to keep up with cybercriminals by continuously beefing up your company’s network security management. To ensure that your company is secure from malicious viruses and links, you will need to implement the cybersecurity measures outlined in this article.