Security isn’t always about the physical. Your business’s data is also at risk.

Every business needs plans to address cyber security threats. From stealing the identities of employees and customers to leaking proprietary data, cyber crime is on the rise.

Over 50% of businesses dealt with a compromising attack in 2017. Use these nine cyber security best practices to avoid becoming another victim.

1. Clearly Document Cyber Security Policies

How do you secure new apps? What training do new employees need? How often do you perform security audits? These are just a few questions that should be answered in your cyber security policies.

Take the time to thoroughly document how you plan to secure your network and devices. Document required cyber security measures to comply with state and federal compliance regulations.

When everything is clearly documented, it’s easier to maintain a more secure environment.

2. Lock Down Mobile

Mobile devices represent a large threat to businesses. All it would take is for an employee to access business data over public Wi-Fi for there to be a major breach. Plus, with employees staying logged in to company apps, a thief could easily access data just by stealing the device.

Create security policies to limit access, such as no access on unsecured Wi-Fi networks, and remotely wipe data if a device is stolen.

3. Back Up Everything

While you hope the worst never happens, one of the top cyber security best practices is to be prepared in case it does. The first step is to always keep current backups. For instance, if your system is infected with ransomware, which experienced rapid growth throughout 2017, you’ll have all your data backed up and won’t feel the need to pay the ransom.

4. Enforce Secure Passwords

Weak passwords are responsible for numerous cyber security breaches. From using default Wi-Fi passwords to email that only takes seconds to crack, your business must enforce secure passwords to reduce your risks.

Creating more secure passwords is easier than you might think with these 20 simple tips. Just ensure employees are required to use them.

5. Be Careful Who You Partner With

A threat many businesses don’t consider is the companies they partner with. For example, if you choose to back up your data to a cloud provider that doesn’t encrypt data transfers, hackers could easily steal data from you.

Ensure every business that stores your company data puts security first. If not, you could be risking the future of your business.

6. Train Employees

One of the top cyber security best practices is training. Do your employees know how to spot phishing emails? What about malicious attachments? Do they have any idea how to create and remember secure passwords?

Take the time to provide in-depth training to help employees better understand how to protect themselves and the business. It’s a good idea to do this yearly and for every new hire as cyber security threats continue to be more sophisticated.

7. Use Security Software

This one might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s important to point out. Your business needs security software, but you can’t just stop at basic anti-virus tools. You’ll need:

  • A full anti-virus/anti-malware suite
  • Tools to manage access to data
  • Firewall(s)

8. Avoid Open Wi-Fi

If you have customers, such as in a retail business, you might be tempted to leave your entire Wi-Fi network open. While it’s convenient for customers, you could be leaving your network open to hackers.

Offer a limited network for customers, but secure your business devices behind a private Wi-Fi network.

9. Physically Secure Data

While all of the above focuses on securing data digitally, you also have to consider how to prevent cyber security incidents physically. One of the most commonly overlooked cyber security best practices is physical security.

For instance, what if someone walked into your business, found an empty office where the employee was off in a meeting, and downloaded proprietary information? This can and does happen.

With physical security, including cameras and guards, you’re able to better control who comes and goes in your business. You can even have more control over employees who may be trying to steal data.

Contact BOS Security

Ready to improve cyber security in your business? Contact BOS Security at 404-793-6965 today to learn how we help keep your digital data safer.

Where do security vulnerabilities lurk in your business? Try our free Security Needs Assessment to find out for yourself.

Image: Manuel Geissinger