Basic Cybersecurity Practices to Minimize Risk
With cybersecurity talent at such a critical shortage, data breaches that expose millions of people’s sensitive information are routine occurrences. It is one of the biggest problems that the modern business faces. Since shortages have businesses of all types scrambling for cybersecurity personnel we thought we’d put together a list of five things that every person should know about how to keep systems secure.
Cybersecurity is just risk mitigation. These five steps will go a long way toward managing the amount of risk, while extending the knowledge base of your staff, and distributing some of the responsibilities for the security of your data to them. These aren’t ironclad policies enacted to protect data, they are tips designed to help an organization better manage the stress that comes from the spike in cyberthreats many businesses see in the course of doing business.
#1 - Keep a Clear Inventory of Assets
The first step toward risk mitigation is to know, and document, exactly what assets you need to protect. This includes every wire, extra peripheral, and piece of software your business has purchased. By knowing exactly what hardware and software you possess, the easier it is to manage it.
#2 - Educate Users on Cybersecurity Best Practices
Training your staff on what it takes to secure a business’ computing network from the myriad of threats your business is exposed to is fundamental to actually protecting these systems. Their online behavior matters, and the more they know about how to spot phishing attacks, how to create and use proper passwords, and how to build work profiles on their mobile devices, the better off your organization’s security efforts are going to be.
#3 - Address the Shadow IT Problem
Shadow IT is software that is downloaded by end users that hasn’t been approved by an organization’s IT administrator. In order to keep software from being vulnerable it has to actively be patched with security updates. If end-users are just downloading any program they want, what’s stopping an infected program from appearing on your network one day? Nothing. Make sure your staff has a clear understanding of what software is allowed and how to download and update approved software titles.
#4 - Have Tools in Place
Comprehensive cybersecurity is dependent on sticking to solid practices, understanding the threats, and having the tools in place to ensure that security can be maintained. Tools such as antivirus and anti-malware, content filtering, spam blocking, and a strong, constantly updated firewall go a long way toward giving any organization a shot at keeping threats from becoming a huge problem for a business.
#5 - Sometimes IT Gets Old
Just like humans, sometimes the older a piece of technology gets, the less effective it is. By upgrading away from old technology, and keeping your technology patched and updated, you have the best chance of protecting your business’ digital assets and keeping malware, hackers, and the like out of your network.
If you would like more information about getting the tools you need to keep your network and infrastructure free from threats and working effectively, reach out to one of our consultants today at 603-889-0800.
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