5 Ways to Successfully Protect Your Business

5-ways-to-successfully-protect-your-business-from-cyber-attacks-live-your-dreams-tips

According to a 2016 Internet Security Threat Report written by Symantec Corp, in 2015, there was a rise in the number of zero day vulnerabilities. They had doubled to 54 which represented a 125 percent increase from the year before. In the same year, security companies like Symantec witnessed a total of nine mega breaches with exposed identities rising to 429 million.

Due to this, the pressure on web administrators and system managers has risen and has led to them keeping up with patches every time vulnerability is reported. What many people don’t know is that all businesses are vulnerable to targeted attacks. In 2015, spear phishing campaigns targeting company employees increased by 55 percent.

With these statistics, you can see why it is important for a company to protect its computer network from being breached. Computer networks are the lifeline of a company in this techno savvy world. So, why do hackers attack a company’s computer network?

Financial reasons5-ways-to-successfully-protect-your-business-from-cyber-attacks-hackers-computer-network-live-your-dreams-tips

This is one of the most common reasons why people attack a company’s computer network. Financial institutions are the most targeted. Many do not report the attacks for fear of losing the trust of their customers. Today, companies have been blackmailed by hackers for a certain amount of money. For example, hackers can take over the systems in a hospital and in order to restore them, a certain amount of money needs to be paid.

There are hackers who have been known to attack CCTV systems in sensitive organisations. Once they have taken over the systems which are connected to the computer network, they demand a certain amount of money. Many will threaten the organisation with stealing or deleting the footage.

To steal intellectual

Businesses and individuals today hack computer networks of other businesses with the purpose of stealing intellectual properties. Pharmaceuticals and technology companies are some of the victims that have fallen for cyber hackers looking to steal intellectual property. This information is used to reproduce the original idea with a few modifications to it in order to prevent the original owner from making a connection.

Personal reasons

There are people who hack computer networks for small and large companies for personal reasons. All they are trying to do is find out vulnerabilities and inform the business so that they can be fixed. These are referred to as white hackers.

 

Here are 5 ways to successfully protect your business from cyber attacks:

#1 Design a fool proof security plan

In order to prevent incidences of cyber attacks, you need to develop a foolproof security plan. The plan should start by highlighting best practices regarding how employees access email, social media and the internet. It should also spell out how frequently passwords need to be changed and clear rules of surfing the website.

#2 Update security systems5-ways-to-successfully-protect-your-business-from-cyber-attacks-pin-live-your-dreams-tips

Majority of companies rely on third party security apps in order to protect their computer networks. Each second, new vulnerabilities appear and they prove to be destructive than before. These vulnerabilities target computer networks for companies looking for information, intellectual property or money. As a company, it is important to ensure all security systems have received up to date patches.

#3 Perform security audits

Security audits need to be conducted periodically as they can help to reveal security vulnerabilities. The audit should start with internet accessing devices. A vulnerability scan should be carried out which will help to reveal any security holes and check for updates to seal them. Applications that can help to find vulnerabilities in computer networks are available from third party vendors. As a large company, you can have an in-house software and security team develop a custom solution.

#4 Incorporate two factor authentication

Until today, many businesses still use simple passwords for their networks. These can be hacked easily with brute force technology. Two factor authentication is great as it provides a two step login process. The system works with a set of printed codes, a smartphone or an email. Every time a user wants to access a sensitive section, they will have to input their password together with a passcode.

#5 Encrypt customers’ data

Majority of hackers target customer records which they reveal to the world. It is critical for a company to begin encrypting their customer data. This will prevent easy access and make it harder for hackers to decrypt the data. There are out of the box applications that provide military grade security for data stored in the database. Integration with these technology helps to protect and prevent access to customer data with ease.

 

Final Thoughts

As a small or large business, security for your computer network should be of utmost importance. Today, computer networks are superhighways in an organisation that serve different departments and their customers with vital data. This is what hackers want to take advantage of. There are ways to prevent this and some include performing a security audit, designing a security plan, encrypting customer data, updating security systems and incorporating two factor authentication.

 

Guest post by Simon Parker
I’m a professional in the security industry and I’m a director of a security company which has over 70 years of shared experience in CCTV, Intruder Alarm, Fire Safety and Access Control security.

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