Today, businesses have less reason to fear burglars than cybercriminals. Yes, burglars can physically damage your property or steal your products, but cybercriminals are much more insidious and the harm they can do can be a lot worse.

The impact of a cyber-attack is huge, it’s not just the time spent online rectifying your website or systems, it’s the potential loss of customers and damage to your reputation.

With the changes and uncertainties COVID-19 has brought upon businesses, cybercriminals have found themselves with endless opportunities to exploit as companies have undertaken a massive transformation.

The speed at which organisations have transitioned to a digital, home-based environment. The rise of unique challenges that have followed in which they must face head-on to protect vital and sensitive business information has never been experienced before.

79% of companies reported to have been hit by breaches. Smaller businesses are less likely to invest in protection because they consider themselves too small to be targeted.

From a cybercriminal’s perspective, small businesses may be less impressive, but the task at hand is usually less difficult and more rewarding.

How Can We Protect Our Business From Cybercrime?

Educate And Train Your Staff

Even if you Implement the latest protection, you won’t be fully protected if your employees don’t follow the rules of digital security.

Over 90% of security breaches happen because your employee opens a gateway to enter. This could include a weak password or falling to the victim a phishing email.

Investing in cutting-edge security software but not educating your employees to prevent cybercrime is like boarding up the windows on your house but leaving the front door open, it just doesn’t make sense.

One thing to remember, security threats should never be a one-time thing. Training your employees should occur regularly to keep up with the latest technology.

Therefore, it’s important to keep your software and systems up to date. Make sure you’ve implemented fundamental security measures such as two-factor authentication and email encryption.

Keep All Software Updated And Regularly Patched

According to Fortinet’s Global Threat Landscape report, 60 percent of cybercrimes attacks targeted software that was at least 10 years old.

Outdated software can expose your company to security flaws. Yes, updates can be time-consuming, but they stop hackers from entering via code defects (Known as exploits).

Turn on automatic updates to be sure.

Activate Data Encryption

Encryption converts your data into a secret code before it’s sent over the internet. This can be activated through your router or by installing a virtual private network (VPN).

A VPN makes your data essentially invisible to hackers so they cannot steal your information.

There are many VPN options available. Before you choose a service, determine your organisation’s needs and carefully research which one is the best fit.

Strong Password Policy

Passwords should never be recycled, and they should be constantly updated. In 2012, a password-cracking expert created a programme that would generate eight-character passwords.

Business.gov recommends using a passphrase rather than a password, especially for accounts that hold important data.

A tip – create a password that is longer than eight characters, the more complicated, the better!

Strict Limitations For Employees

Creating a strict set of rules for your employee on what they can and cannot instal on company computers.

Approval of any downloadable software should be needed, this could prevent malware from infecting your computer’s network and reduce wasted time.

The only way to protect yourself is to prepare, educate and follow the advice above.

Enable Multi-factor Authentication (MFA)

MFA is not perfect, but it’s an extra level of security making it much harder for cybercriminals to crack.

In many situations, and rightly so, websites requiring users to provide not only a strong password but a separate code linked from your email or telephone.

When you have the option, enable MFA, especially for logins that hold crucial information and data.

Adding another layer of security could be the difference.

Outsourcing Your IT Support

If you want to ensure you’ve got the right level of cybersecurity in place to protect you from cybercrime, then it makes sense to get expert help.

Having a good IT support package in place will give you the confidence of knowing your business data is in safe hands, and that someone is monitoring your systems with a professional, diligent eye.

For more information, please call us on 01282 506 616, or use our contact form to send us a message. We’ll be back in touch as soon as possible.