Cybercriminals thrive because many small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) believe their data is not valuable enough to be hacked. This is a misconception that needs to be quashed immediately.
Hackers actually see gold in SMBs’ data. Their methods are becoming much simpler, too, but no less effective. In fact, sending innocuous emails is now their preferred hacking method. And considering that 92% of malware is delivered via email, companies that do not take steps to bolster their protections are practically begging to be scammed.
Putting a data protection plan (DPP) in place can save your business from these and other dangers. Note these five important terms when creating or enhancing your SMB’s plan.
Your DPP should clearly outline strategies on labeling, describing, and managing sensitive business data. To ensure you’re on top of your data protection strategy, make sure you define and delegate roles and responsibilities to the right personnel.
Tasks should be detailed and expectations must be set to ensure accountability. These tasks can include setting password rules and enforcing them, listing the steps staff need to take in case of a disaster, managing employee access to cloud-based accounts, and more.
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Nowadays, it’s expected of any business — SMBs included — to store huge amounts of data in the cloud and/or access them via the internet. But as data access and storage systems become more agile, so do cybercriminals’ hacking techniques.
Encryption boosts your business’s protection by rendering data unreadable to intruders. Implementing encryption protocols ensures that business data — which may be passed on via email and other means — are only accessed by intended recipients who have an access key. It’s one of the most effective ways to fend off cybercriminals’ attempts to exploit company data. Even better, there are options to encrypt individual files, entire storage disks, and files stored in the cloud.
Although backing up all your critical data in a highly secure in-house server seems like a practical plan, it isn’t the best way to do so. Regardless of how you choose to back up data, know that you have a variety of options.
Businesses today should adopt a backup system that works best for them. That means your backup systems don’t have to be strictly in-house or cloud-based. For example, single-location businesses that experience frequent internet downtimes may benefit from in-house servers, which they can rely on for their daily computing and storage needs. That way, even if the internet is down, they still have fast access to crucial programs and data.
For organizations with remote working policies, it’s imperative to take advantage of cloud services, which allow workers to access files and computing resources anywhere there’s an internet connection.
Based on recent research, cybercrime could rise by 175% in the next five years. Although it’s near impossible to learn everything about cybercrime, protecting data, and securing IT systems, learning the basics about cybersecurity should be a given.
Provide regular training sessions to staff, with a focus on key security issues such as data theft, malware infections, and the like. Educate them on practicing safety measures like regularly changing passwords, using a reliable VPN when connecting to the office network from an offsite location, and being vigilant when opening links and downloading files from suspicious emails.
If you’re willing to spend on advanced technologies and a talented workforce, you must also invest in protecting your data. That’s because your computers and staff can only do so much without proper data safeguards.
Managed IT services providers can help you create a DPP that significantly reduces the risks of data loss resulting from cyber attacks, natural disasters, or human error. Leaning on the expertise of cybersecurity specialists is a worthy investment that will protect you from a variety of threats and keep your business performing optimally.
There’s simply too much at stake for any organization to neglect data protection. Get in touch with Cyber Shift Technologies LLC’s experts to learn how a strong backup and recovery plan can help tighten the safety of your business in Akron, Canton, and Massillon.