Cyberattacks and data breaches are on the rise for businesses. The Ponemon Institute found that the average cost of corporate data breaches increased to $3.5 million in 2015.
This means that businesses must take every potential step to stay secure if they don’t want to pay the skyrocketing costs associated with data breaches.
If you’re one of the businesses worried about the problems data breaches can cause, let’s go over four basic IT security precautions that are easy and cost-effective to employ.
1. Encourage Strong Passwords
Passwords are the foundation of security within the world of business. It only takes one high-level person with a weak password for hackers to crack even the strongest of security protocols.
Ensure that you encourage strong passwords within your business. Encourage employees to mix capital letters, lowercase letters, numbers and symbols into their passwords. Explain why the default password and passwords containing words are weak.
Mandate that login information is refreshed routinely. Employees should be required to use new passwords every 30 to 90 days.
2. Implement Mail Filtering
Spam accounted for 66.34 percent of all email during Q1 of 2014 according to the 2014 Quarterly Spam Statistics Report. Many of these emails utilize phishing, which means that spam represents a large threat for businesses.
Solving this threat may be as simple as filtering it before it reaches its intended recipients. Advanced software filtering can offer a way to neutralize the threat of email spam and phishing before it reaches vulnerable recipients.
The best part is that this filtering can be something as simple as PGP email encryption or something as comprehensive as inbound email filtering.
3. Utilize Third-Party Network and Security Support
There is only so much that your business’s IT department can do. They can only monitor threats to your business while they are present.
Third-party network and security support services from companies like Bedrock IT offer managed services in Ottawa, Canada, and represent one way for businesses to stay secure 24 hours a day. These services can be used to supplement your existing IT network security, or they can be used to free up your IT staff to focus on securing other areas of your business.
4. Promote Critical Thinking
The 2015 Cyberthreat Defense Report for North America & Europe found that phishing, malware and zero-day attacks give IT departments the most trouble.
The common thread amongst these threats is that they leverage faults in critical thinking to gain access to work systems. The weakest link in IT security will always be the human one.
By training your employees to think before they act and to doubt, you will help to significantly strengthen the final line of cyber defense within your business.
Strengthening Your Network Security by Focusing on the Basics
The four techniques listed above represent a solid start for securing the IT side of your business. Some techniques will provide more security than others, but each will make your business less of a target for cyberattacks.
These basic security practices will make your business less of an easy target for attackers to target. They will help significantly reduce the threat of cyberattacks, which can be further mitigated by embracing new security measures and more robust security policies.