Cybercrime is now more commonplace than ever before. In fact, you can be quite certain that no one is safe. Hackers and other criminals aren’t particularly concerned with whether your company is small or large or even what sector that you belong to. If there is a weak spot in your defenses, it will be discovered and exploited.
This means that you have to begin fortifying your business against such attacks. Even if you seem like an unlikely target, your company could still be at risk from being sought out by criminals. After all, they may be simply using your organization to get to your clients. This is why you need to have a proper cybersecurity plan in place.
Now, if you are a newer or smaller venture, you may be trying to figure out how to go about incorporating such a plan. Well, if you are in need of any sort of help or guidance, you will find exactly what you need below:
Evaluate the Risks
It is important to keep in mind that each company is at risk from different kinds of threats. The exact precautions that you will need to take depend on the specific kind of cybercriminal that you may be facing. So, while a general approach can get rid of most issues, you must also narrow the field a bit.
To do this, there are certain organization elements that you will need to evaluate. First, consider what kind of data or information you have access to. On the surface, it may not seem that you have anything of importance. However, if you are storing people’s addresses, social security numbers, or financial information on your servers, then you are actually a guardian to sensitive data.
Now that you have figured out what needs protecting, it is time to ask yourself the question – who would want this information? Would it be hackers looking to commit identity theft? Or, is it someone more specific such as a competitor? Again, this information will help you build up your cybersecurity defenses in a more customized and useful way.
When considering potential risks, you should not leave out the possibility of a corporate spy. For all you know, one of your employees could be bypassing all the security measures in place and accessing sensitive data. To avoid such a scenario, it is vital that you vet potential candidates a lot more thoroughly.
Educate and Train Employees
It is estimated that two-thirds of cyber-attacks occur due to employee negligence. In fact, around 90 percent of cybercrimes occur directly due to human error. Not all of these mistakes are intentional. The truth is that the average worker is woefully unaware of how they may be risking their company’s security.
This is why it is up to you to educate and train your employee. After all, if they’re not aware that they are making a particular mistake, an effort can’t be made to stop it. Thus, it is a good idea to have a mandatory training program where each worker is informed of all the threats out there.
If possible, this is something you should do a few times a year. Keep in mind, cyber threats are constantly evolving. So, if you want your employees to take the necessary precautions, they have to stay up-to-date on what to watch out for.
Have a Cybersecurity Policy in Place
In most workplaces, cybersecurity is simply a presumed fact. However, just imagining that your employees are going to follow certain guidelines isn’t good enough. No, you actually need to have a cybersecurity policy in place. By writing up a proper document, you will be alerting workers to how important this issue really is.
Of course, cybersecurity policies don’t just serve as a warning. They also work well as guidelines. Since you can’t completely guarantee total security at all times, your employees must know what to do in case of a breach. If you have a detailed policy in place, it can help to show your employees what steps they need to take. In this instance, you will be able to minimize the damages that do occur.
Limit Access to Company Data
Even with the background checks and cybersecurity training, you still shouldn’t give employees carte blanche access to all of your data. For one thing, the more people have access to higher-level information, the easier it is for a criminal to find their way in. This is because there are a greater number of access points for them.
Thus, you should limit access to information according to someone’s role in the company. This ensures that sensitive information is only available to a select few. In turn, these individuals can take greater security measures to keep the data under lock and key.
Limiting access is also useful in terms of culpability. Should the information be compromised, you will have an easier time learning who was responsible. This will be particularly important if it is was a coordinated or premeditated attack against your company.
Carry Out Regular Testing
It is easy to become complacent once all the necessary security measures are in place. Nonetheless, it is important to always keep your defenses up. Keep in mind, weak spots in your cybersecurity system may appear at any moment. This is especially true if updates haven’t been installed as necessary.
Or, it could be that a hacker is trying to find a more subtle way into your network. Either way, you should have an IT professional carry out testing on a regular basis. This will ensure that everything is working as it should be. If you are lucky, you may also be able to identify some weak spots that you were previously unaware of.
In addition to testing, it is a good idea to make sure that your employees are also sticking to the cybersecurity policy. Do regular checks in this area, increasing the likelihood that your workers will be more careful in the future.
If you are trying to put together a cybersecurity plan for your business, then these are guidelines to follow. With this information, you will be able to construct a model that is perfectly suited to your company, clients, and even employees.