You’ve worked hard to build your business and make it a success but how much thought are you giving to cybersecurity?
With an increasing amount of our day-to-day activities online, cyber-criminals now more than ever before are easily able to wreak havoc on businesses just like yours.
As a small business owner, you may assume your company is not big enough to be targeted by cybercriminals. In fact, the reverse is true, especially as small companies rarely invest enough in security measures and training.
A report in 2019 by CNN estimated that a data breach can cost a small business around $200,000. If customers’ sensitive personal information is compromised, businesses will most likely also have to pay for lawsuits and legal fees that accompany them. And that’s not all: according to CNN 80% of consumers defect from a business if their information is compromised in a breach, so irreversibly damage can be caused.
Cybersecurity done right can protect your business
With proper cybersecurity measures in place, small business owners can massively reduce their risk of being attacked and have confidence that their information and data is secured.
So where do you start?
Cybersecurity can seem daunting, however it doesn’t have to be, and while it’s important to note that there isn’t a single solution that will magically protect a business, by following our four step process you can ensure better cybersecurity without breaking the company bank account.
Before you get started on the journey to securing your business against cyberthreats you need to review your current situation by carrying out a simple audit. Use the below questions to help guide your audit:
Step 1: Audit your current situation
- Do you have a firewall and intrusion detection system for all web connections?
- Is a virtual private network (VPN) in place for remote access?
- Are all modem and wireless access connections known and secured?
- Is data backed up to a secure server or the cloud?
- Is your critical data centralised on a sever and backed up daily to a remote location?
- Is there a security policy in place for downloading and installing software?
- Are all your devices updated with latest system updates and security patches?
- Is there any antivirus software being used?
- Are data records and your customers information encrypted and accessible only to those who need it?
- Are hard copy files kept secure in filing cabinets with controlled access?
- Is there a policy on standard cybersecurity practices available?
- Do you utilise confidentiality agreements that discuss data security etc. with your contractors and/or vendors?
Carrying out this type of audit will allow you to see the vulnerabilities and gaps in your business that need attention.
Step 2: Get the basics right first
The first step towards cyber protection is to take some simple actions and adopt several safe behaviours – all designed to reduce the risk of online threats to your business. These basics should include:
- Download software updates – updates usually contain vital security upgrades that keep devices and business information safe
- Use strong passwords and 2FA – make sure passwords are unique for all accounts with two-factor authentication (2FA) enabled as an added precaution
- Delete suspicious emails – phishing emails or scam emails may contain fraudulent requests for information or links to malware
- Educate your staff – your employees should be aware of cybersecurity threats and how they should behave and respond online.
Step 3: Understanding the risks to your business
Once you have the basics in place and some basic protection, the next step is to take a risk management approach to analysing how your business may be affected by a cyberattack. Questions you should consider include:What is directly at risk?
E.g. money, information, systems, devices, reputation, your customers, and their accounts etc.
Who could pose a threat to your business?
E.g. current/former employees, people you do business with, hackers and criminals
What forms could threats take?
E.g. theft or unauthorised access to devices, remote attacks on your systems and website, attacks to information held in third party systems (hosted services or company bank account) etc.
What impact could an attack have?
E.g. financial losses, losing business from bad publicity, damage to reputation and customers base, costs from cleaning up affected systems, costs of fines if personal data is lost or compromised and damage to other businesses you supply or are connected to.
It’s important to understand your infrastructure and setup from the ground up in order to recognise the areas that need protecting. In most cases, and once you have gone through the above questions, the findings will usually result in the need for protection across:
- Employee and shared email accounts
- The business’ network and cloud
- User access on devices and credentials
- Device protection
- Web protection and content filtering
- Data, records, and documents
In addition to these findings, it is worthwhile looking into the type of threats that are associated with these areas. The most common threats to business take the shape of:
- Malware – viruses, trojans, spyware, worms, ransomware and adware developed by hackers with the intent of damaging services, stealing data, and causing harm to businesses.
- Phishing – attempts by scammers to trick you into giving out sensitive information by contacting you from what appears to be a “legitimate business” such as a bank or service provider via email, social media, phone call or text.
Step 4: Sourcing a solutions provider and the right plan for you
So, you have the basics in place and have developed a greater understanding of the threats that lurk online and the areas of your business that need stronger security. It’s time to look at cybersecurity solutions providers that can deploy and maintain the best security for you.
How do you know which solutions provider is best for your business?
It’s important to ensure that you partner with a business that not only offers the quality solutions you need but are aligned with your overall goals and objectives. This can be a daunting, so here are a few questions to consider when selecting a provider that is right for you:
- Does the provider offer a solution that fits my business (small, medium and enterprise grade services)?
- Does the provider offer individual solutions or a complete solution with complete protection?
- Does the provider offer protection, detection, and remediation services in the event of a data breach?
- Does the provider ensure you have access to resources and support 24/7 in the event of a data breach?
- Are the solutions on offer covering all the key areas of your business that need to be secured?
- Are the solutions affordable to ensure they are within your financial budget?
- Can the solutions integrate with and work alongside your current systems and infrastructure?
Considering the above will allow you to select one or two providers that you can hold further discussions with to unlock the best security solution for your business.
It’s important to note that there isn’t an individual product solution in the market that will magically protect your business which is why we recommend that you invest in a complete solution that offers comprehensive protection across your entire business.
How Wontok can help?
Wontok delivers cyberthreat protection to businesses via a single, easy to use cloud-based platform, Wontok One.
Wontok One is cybersecurity at its best – enabling businesses to take control of their cybersecurity needs from one place, and best of all, without the need for any IT expertise. With Wontok One, anyone can manage cyber protection.
Offering robust and comprehensive security protection at a competitive price, key features include:
- Easy to use, set up and manage – add users and devices with ease, and monitor all activity from a single platform.
- Always on, real time protection against threats
- World class email and browser security – protection against cybercriminals using malicious URLs and phishing scams to unleash an attack
- Identity health checks – check at any time if your emails or passwords have been compromised online.
It’s time to take control of your business by implementing a cybersecurity solution that is easy to use and secures data, devices and emails – anywhere they are used and on any network.
Wontok partnered with communication service providers and other trusted organisations to deliver a suite of cybersecurity solutions that keep small businesses’ data protected. Get to know more here.