Cybercrime has put more than one company out of business in its time, and it costs the economy dearly. As a new organisation, do things right from the start. Keep cyber criminals out of your accounts and data, by educating yourself on the risks and how to prevent attacks.
Here are just some of the ways that you can stop your business being a vulnerable target for hackers.
Keep Your Computer Updated
All computers are full of software that keeps them running. However, software often has chinks in its armour that hackers can exploit.
Many people don’t bother with updating their software with updates and patches, but this is a huge mistake. You’re making it easy for the cybercriminals to get their hands on your information.
Didn’t Expect? Don’t Click
If you’re receiving unexpected emails – especially ones containing links – be sure not to click. It’s likely that this is spam, and that the contents of the email are actually highly damaging to your computer. Immediately flag these emails as spam and move on.
Passwords are the only defence between the outside world and your accounts. If you think of all of the power and information that another person would have, if they could just access some of your online log-ins, it can become a truly frightening prospect.
Create hacker-proof passwords for all of your accounts, and don’t just use the same password for everything – choose something long, with a mixture of letters and numbers. One in ten of us use “1234” as our password, for debit cards, mobile phones, and more; that’s obviously an example of how not to do things.
Place a padlock over your network connection, so nobody else can tap into it. Where possible, avoid Wi-Fi connections in the building, as these are easier for crooks to attack. Choose an internet security system that you can trust – Dell has some fantastic packages for businesses: http://www.dell.com/learn/uk/en/ukbsdt1/software-security-endpoint-security. This is just one example of comprehensive internet cover – you don’t want to be stingy here – this is a powerful way to protect your company and could really save you in the long term.
Guard Your Information
Don’t hand out your business’ information readily over the internet. If someone is trying to ask you for your details online, opt for a method that is safe and secure. Do not hand out any sensitive information over emails. Be sure that you are only dealing with protected websites that carry the padlock symbol in the search bar (or ‘https’). Guard your email address, where possible (although, this isn’t always that simple). The less you give away online, the better.
Review Your Finances Regularly
Keep going over your accounts and look for anomalies. If there are any suspicious payments in there that you didn’t expect, always query this. Ask your staff if anyone has made that transaction, and if you still have doubts, contact your bank immediately.
Even if the amount of money withdrawn is small, it’s still worth making sure that this wasn’t an illegal transaction. Often, cyber criminals will take out tiny sums regularly – hoping that you won’t notice – until they have leeched a large amount of money from your business.