Many small and medium-sized businesses think they’re safe from hackers, viruses, and security breaches, yet have no cybersecurity plans in place, according to a worrisome new report from Symantec.
Yet this handful of simple steps can help keep SMBs and their customers safe:
- Know what you need to protect: One data breach could mean financial ruin for an SMB. Look at where your information is being stored and used, and protect those areas accordingly.
- Enforce strong password policies: Passwords with eight characters or more and use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols (e.g., # $ % ! ?) will help protect your data.
- Map out a disaster preparedness plan today: Don’t wait until it’s too late. Identify your critical resources, use appropriate security and backup solutions to archive important files, and test frequently.
- Encrypt confidential information: Implement encryption technologies on desktops, laptops and removable media to protect your confidential information from unauthorized access, providing strong security for intellectual property, customer and partner data.
- Use a reliable security solution: Today’s solutions do more than just prevent viruses and spam; they scan files regularly for unusual changes in file size, programs that match known malware, suspicious e-mail attachments and other warning signs. It’s the most important step to protect your information.
- Protect Information Completely: It’s more important than ever to back up your business information. Combine backup solutions with a robust security offering to protect your business from all forms of data loss.
- Stay up to date: A security solution is only as good as the frequency with which it is updated. New viruses, worms, Trojan horses and other malware are born daily, and variations of them can slip by software that is not current.
- Educate employees: Develop Internet security guidelines and educate employees about Internet safety, security and the latest threats, as well as what to do if they misplace information or suspect malware on their machine.
For additional information on how to prevent cybercrime before it happens, check out the STOP. THINK. CONNECT. Campaign at http://stopthinkconnect.org/tips-and-advice/. NCSAM supporters can get the latest news and updates on Facebook atwww.facebook.com/staysafeonline and on Twitter at @StaySafeOnline. The official Twitter hashtag of NCSAM is #ncsam. The National Cyber Security Awareness Month Web Portal is also available at: http://www.staysafeonline.org/ncsam/ and a calendar of additional NCSAM events can be found at: http://staysafeonline.org/ncsam/events.