The digital age makes it a perilous time to be a business owner. Every week more stories about shattered cybersecurity make the news. Between phishing, ransomware, and viruses — it seems the hackers and cybercriminals are winning.
However, there are several surprising (and easy!) things businesses can do to significantly reduce their risk of being impacted by a cybersecurity breach. There are several things a businessperson like you can do to minimize your risk of cybercrime. According to CIS, this is what you should be paying attention to:
Know what you have
It seems self-explanatory, but if you don't know what assets you have, you can't confirm they are all protected. So a detailed asset management system like Ivanti's IT Asset Management Suite can allow you to dynamically inventory your entire network for all assets, IOT devices, and things that might have been brought in by your employees that are unauthorized. Any device on a company network could be a potential injection point for a virus or ransomware.
Once you've got the asset list, you need a system that can then inventory the software running on those assets. This is key to determine out of date software versions and unauthorized programs. A full inventory of both authorized and unauthorized hardware and software is the absolute first place for a business to start.
Bulk up network defenses
Network defenses are also paramount. A firewall simply isn't enough if you cannot determine what ports might be open to the outside world. Recent ransomware attacks leveraged a key Windows port to make its way across the entire globe. Monitoring these ports and being able to shut them down in seconds will protect your business from disaster. Luckily, tuning existing equipment goes a long way, as does investing in network security software like BitDefender and Kapersky.
Educate, educate, educate!
User education and annual cybersecurity awareness training are key to creating a solid defense against malware. These can help keep your staff from clicking on phishing emails and potentially installing malicious code into your environment. Internal phishing campaigns and awareness programs are often underfunded, but can be the empowering piece of protection for an organization.
If your business accepts credit card payments, stores customer information, uses a cloud, or conducts business online, guess what — you're at risk. If you came under attack tomorrow, would your system stand firm or would it fall? Assess your risk with help from Alliance Insurance Agency's cybersecurity risk advisors today.