Hackers are increasingly targeting small and medium-sized businesses. In this blog, we reveal how you can mitigate threats in a few easy steps.
No business is too small or too big to fall victim to a cyber attack.
Although media reports focus on breaches at corporate giants, the reality is small businesses are the new frontier for cyber criminals.
Small businesses are particularly vulnerable to cyber attacks because many can't afford dedicated IT staff. As a result, their computer and network security are often inadequate or non-existent, making the business easy to attack.
The good news is there are plenty of ways to boost your cyber security without breaking the bank. Some of the steps - such as signing our for our Core Membership package - are even free.
Here are 7 easy ways to boost your cyber security:
1. Join the EMCRC
At the East Midlands Cyber Resilience Centre, we have a range of membership packages that help support your business to become more cyber resilient. From free resources to awareness sessions, our membership options - including our FREE core package - are catered to your needs. Learn more here.
2. Get Cyber Essentials
Cyber Essentials is a simple and effective Government-backed scheme, supported by industry experts and the Cyber Resilience Centre Network, that will help you put measures in place to protect your organisation, regardless of size or sector, against a range of the most common cyber attacks. This includes protecting against threats such as malware, ransomware and phishing.
3. Use strong passwords
Your laptops, computers, tablets and smartphones will contain a lot of your own business-critical data, the personal information of your customers, and also details of the online accounts that you access. It is essential that this data is available to you, but not available to unauthorised users. Passwords - when implemented correctly - are a free, easy and effective way to prevent unauthorised users accessing your devices.
To learn about how to create strong passwords, how to look after them, and what to do if you think they've been stolen, click here.
4. Use Two-Step Verification
Two-step verification prevents would-be hackers from accessing your personal and business accounts, even if they've stolen your password. Two-step verification basically makes you perform another identifying action after putting in your password.
Usually, after you put in your password, your two-step verification system sends a text message to a phone number you programmed into it. This text message contains a unique, randomly generated code which you input in order to move on.
Learn more here.
We're here to answer any of your questions and support you on your journey towards cyber resilience - contact us here.
5. Back-up data
Every business needs a sound data back-up implementation plan and strategy. If you store all your data in one place, then if that place breaks down or gets hacked, you risk losing everything.
A back-up is a digital copy of original data to be used to recover work in case of disaster. If you lose your data, you have a backup. Most modern software programs have the means to automatically back-up whatever data you tell it to, but you can also simply copy document-by-document if you're so inclined, or if you only want to back-up some data.
Learn more about backing up your data here.
6. Update antivirus software
Antivirus software developers need to constantly update in order to address structural weaknesses based on data collected by usage, add new features to counter progressions in common viruses, and to generally improve antivirus efficiency.
Once you've installed antivirus software, set up auto-updates and make sure they're happening. Failing to regularly update your antivirus software will make it ineffective, opening you up to possible cyber attack.
7. Educate employees
Our Staff Awareness Training sessions help staff understand their working environment, giving them the confidence to speak up when something doesn’t look right. The training is focused on those with little or no cyber security or technical knowledge and is delivered in small, succinct modules using real world examples.
Awareness training is tailored to each individual audience to provide the right level of skills and context for your business. The trainers are highly knowledgeable, personable and friendly and pride themselves on providing the right environment for your people to feel comfortable and to ask questions.
By the end of the training, your employees will be highly effective barriers to cyber crime. To request a quote, contact us here.
The contents of this blog provided for general information only and are not intended to replace specific professional advice relevant to your situation. The intention of East Midlands Cyber Resilience Centre (EMCRC) is to encourage cyber resilience by raising issues and disseminating information on the experiences and initiatives of others. Articles on the website cannot by their nature be comprehensive and may not reflect most recent legislation, practice, or application to your circumstances. EMCRC provides affordable services and Trusted Partners if you need specific support. For specific questions please contact us by email.
EMCRC does not accept any responsibility for any loss which may arise from reliance on information or materials published on this blog. EMCRC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites that link to this site or which are linked from it.