For all companies, online security is a persistent worry and cyber attacks are a daily occurrence. Threats range from the ever evolving phishing e-mail, all the way to what the industry calls an Advance Persistent Threat.
The threat from cyber-crime has experts from all over the world calling for greater public awareness of the risks. While the general public image of a hacker is one of a geeky young lad glued to his computer all night, the reality is that there are very sophisticated criminal networks looking to make money out of their nefarious skills.
As a result, the online security industry is turning over bigger bucks each year. Huge cyber breaches as seen with Sony and the Ashley Madison hack, as well as more recently the EE data breach had potentially life changing consequences for millions of people as they scrambled to make sure their data was safe. There will always be flaws for exploitation and keeping staff vigilant and aware will help keep your network free from infection.
The two easiest policies to follow are 1) use strong passwords and 2) always keep your software updated. It’s true that the more random your password is the harder it will be for a hacker to access your key accounts, but often updating software is just as important. If there are flaws in the code that a hacker can exploit to gain access to private information they will need to be patched in software updates. Many software companies even put out ‘bug bounties’, offering money to the public to alert them of these mistakes.
Phishing attacks are one of the most common cyber attacks staff encounter. A strong anti-spam solution will protect you from being flooded with malicious e-mails, but as hacking methods evolve even these preventative measures may fall one step behind. Ill-meaning post in one’s inbox is thankfully relatively easy to spot, but staff will need to be on their toes to make sure they don’t open any e-mail attachments from questionable e-mail addresses, with vague content.
One of the measures we suggest is investing in a separate Wi-Fi network for staff and customers. Any device that leaves your company network and then returns can be a housing a potential online security threat. A device that has access to your network could contain accidentally downloaded malware and spell disaster for the safety of your data.
If in doubt about whether or not this is something you need to worry about, consider this; it’s a matter of when, not if. Keep your system up to date with the latest in anti-virus and anti-spam software because it’s not just your data that you have to protect, but your customers’ data too.