Learn about the essential security measures every business should implement to protect their sensitive data and prevent cyber threats. From robust password policies and employee training to network security and data encryption, discover how to safeguard your business and prioritize cybersecurity.
Businesses over the past two decades have been relying increasingly on IT infrastructure. In particular, the last decade has seen digital infrastructure and data because the norm – but this has also led to a significant increase in cyber threats to businesses of all sizes.
The ever-evolving cyber threat landscape poses significant risks to businesses – from financial loss to customer loss, reputational damages, and even legal penalties. We discussed this with TechQuarters, a provider of small business IT support London– based SMBs have been relying on for over 10 years. They pointed to a number of important security measures that modern businesses should be implementing.
In this article, we will explore the types of measures that can help businesses protect their customers, employees, data, and systems against cyber threats.
- Robust Password Policies
Maintaining robust password practices is a crucial part of protecting sensitive information in a company. Many businesses require users to create strong passwords that combine a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters. They may also require users to change their passwords every 3-6 months.
Additionally, multi-factor authentication (MFA) – which may include biometric data, SMS or email codes, or an authentication application – can add additional layers of security to accounts.
- Regular Software Updates and Patch Management
Keeping software and application up-to-date is critical in eliminating vulnerabilities across the business environment. All software has vulnerabilities in them – some are known, others are not (these are known as zero-day, and can also be exploited). Hackers can use software vulnerabilities to gain control of software or extract user information from them. This is why updates and patches are very important.
By having an established update and patch management process, organizations can ensure their software remains up-to-date. Many providers of business IT support London companies rely on incorporating update and patch management into their services, as this type of proactive approach ensures that vulnerabilities in the organization are minimized as quickly as possible.
- Network Security Measures
Organizations’ networks should be protected against unauthorized access, harmful web traffic, and other forms of cyber threats.
The most common approach to protecting networks is implementing firewalls. There are many different types of firewalls available, depending on what an organization wants them to do – whether it be monitoring and blocking web traffic on an ethernet network, or securing application gateways.
In addition to firewalls, businesses can use solutions like Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), which provide real-time monitoring and alerts on suspicious activity on networks. Another approach is segmenting networks into subnetworks, to slow the impact of a network breach (each subnetwork can be protected with firewalls of their own).
- Employee Training and Awareness
Educating users about cybersecurity awareness plays a crucial role in building the strongest possible line of defense against cyber threats.
Cybersecurity awareness includes educating users about different types of cyber risks, and best practices best practices for data protection – which should include proper password management and identifying suspicious emails or links. Businesses can provide employees with training programs, employee handbooks, and regular refresher courses to refresh and reinforce employee knowledge and practice.
- Incident Response and Monitoring
Incident response is a crucial part of modern security. While it is most valuable to minimize the chances of a security breach occurring in the first place, having a swift incident response plan will help minimize the impact of a breach if it does happen.
We spoke with TechQuarters about this. Having provided IT support North London businesses use extensively, they recommended the formation of a dedicated incident response team, who are trained in appropriate incident management procedures. Furthermore, organizations should ensure their IT department is monitoring systems for suspicious activity – this will enable them to respond to incidents more promptly.