It is important to have all the information you need about your customers and clients. However, making sure that these private details remain safe is as important as the overall health of any business. Several small business owners could provide a more attractive target for shady individuals like hackers than bigger firms since they do not invest as many resources in cyber security and IT services. This could hold true for smaller firms that are third party providers for bigger companies.
For instance, the hackers who got debit and credit card information from 40 million Target clients during the Christmas shopping season back in 2013 reportedly got access to the systems of the national retailers targeted a smaller company first. The system of the target was compromised through the use of the network credential of a contractor from Pennsylvania who provides and maintains refrigerating, and HVAC systems for the company.
It’s crucial for small businesses as well as their employees to be careful of the kind of sensitive information they have that a hacker would want. Think of how crucial this data is and what could happen when the hackers got their hands on it and how it will affect your general business model.
Effective Data Protection Tips From IT Services Professionals
Here are a few suggestions for protecting your system and making sure that the personal information of your employees and customers are private:
- If you collect information, then you should protected from unauthorized and inappropriate access.
- Be sure to have a stronger data privacy and IT support system. Clients have to know that you’re safeguarding their information. Be sure that you’ve got a policy that they could refer to, which explains how you are safeguarding their information. Be sure to remain straightforward with your clients regarding the consumer data that you collect and what exactly you do with it. Be honest with them could help you develop consumer trust and show that you value their data and you are doing everything you can to protect it.
- You need to know what exactly you are protecting. You should know all the information that you have and where you are storing it, exactly how you are using it and who’s got access it it. You should have a good understanding of the type of assets you’ve got and why hackers may want to get them. You can’t protect what you have no idea about.
- Never underestimate the potential and existing threat. In a certain survey that’s performed by the Alliance, 85 percent of small business owners think larger enterprises are targeted compared to them. As a matter of fact, there have been instances when small business have lost a hefty amount of cash to cybercriminals.
- Don’t get what you don’t need. There more important information that you have, then chances are you will be a bigger target. Don’t use social security numbers or other important personal information for client identification. Instead, go for log in identification as well as passwords. Add additional layers of identification to prevent attackers from simulating others. Think about deleting personal information that you have no need for.
- Make sure that your machine is clean. You must have the latest web browser, security software, and operating system. These are among the best defences against malware, viruses, as well as other online threats. Several software programs would update and connect automatically to defend against known risks. If there’s an option to turn automatic updates on then you should switch it on.
- Use several security layers. Spam filters would weed out phishing and malware scams, a lot of which are aimed exactly at companies, keeping your email easier and safer to use. Use a firewall to keep sensitive data in and criminals out.
- You should scan all of your new devices. Make sure that you scan all your devices including USBs before you starting using them or attaching them to your network.
- Don’t forget to educate your employees. Your staff are the handlers of the data of all your customers. They should be kept updated about the proper ways to protect that information to be sure that it doesn’t accidentally go to the wrong hands. They must be educated regarding the newest fraud schemes and they should be urged to use the best and most effective practices like not replying to or opening unfamiliar attachments or clicking on any suspicious link in any unsolicited email messages they receive.
- Keep your mobile devices protected. Tablets, smartphones, and laptops could add to the productivity and flexibility of your employee, but they could also become repositories of important information, which, when lost, could harm your clients and your company. You should inculcate among your employees as well as other partners how important it is to keep these devices safe from theft or loss. At the same time, you should stress that it is worse if they don’t report such as incident.
Get in touch with SpartanTec, Inc. for additional information on managed IT services and how you could keep the data that you are collecting from your clients safe from outside attacks and other potential threats.