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Cyber Security For Small Businesses – 4 Security Tips For Start-Ups

30 November 2017

Cyber security is fast becoming a major concern for companies of all sizes, with 46% of UK businesses reporting a security breach in the last 12 months!

For start-ups, it is best to practice good cyber security measures from day one, as this will ensure that your company stays protected from issues that could potentially force you out of business. It will also mean that a secure ethos is embedded in the company’s culture.

How To Ensure You Have Cyber Security For Your Small Business

Here are 4 security tips that any start-up should be implementing.

Use Password Protection

The most basic but essential behaviour to encourage is quality password protection. On any device, the default password setting should be immediately changed to something that is very hard to guess – a password using numbers, letters, and punctuation marks is best practice.

If you find it difficult to keep track of all the passwords and login details, a password manager account can be a good solution. Last Pass is currently used by a number of businesses, and keeps all your passwords in one place.

Consider using 2 factor authentication for any banking or financial accounts, as it will ensure that another layer of security is added for this important information.

Be Aware Of Malware and Phishing

To protect against malware, use respected anti-virus software on all pc’s, laptops, and tablets. Don’t just rely on free software as you could be breaching their terms of use – Avast offer an affordable and highly rated business package. A good anti-virus system should be constantly monitoring for threats to your devices!

In addition, installing a firewall on your router, and software firewalls on your devices can help to secure your network from internet hackers (this is one of our areas of expertise – get in touch for more information).

A cyber-savvy company should never allow employees to use memory sticks or USB devices in order to store data, as they can be lost, stolen, or easily compromised. Instead, use cloud storage such as Dropbox that requires a password to access.

Other behaviours can also protect your systems:

  • Never respond to emails requesting financial information or passwords
  • Always install security updates from device or software manufacturers
  • Passwords should be changed if a phishing attack is suspected to have taken place

Mobile Device Security

With many businesses now accessing sensitive information on mobile products, it is crucial to make sure that any mobile hardware used for work purposes can only by accessed by entering a security code or by using fingerprint scanning.

Public WiFi should never be used to transmit business information – instead only send it through your own protected WiFi network.

Tracking software can also be installed on all mobile devices, so they can be located when lost or stolen, and remotely wiped of any data.

Always Backup

Relying on a single copy of important information is a risky scenario. If the computer malfunctions, the data may be lost forever. Always have a backup in case the original gets lost or destroyed.

Store the backup on a separate machine that is unconnected to the original device, or send a secure copy to the cloud by using Dropbox or Google Drive. Educate and monitor employees to ensure that copies are always made – failure to do so could mean that work is lost and has to be repeated – adding significant, unforeseen labour costs to the budget.

At Equipment HQ, we are experts in installing, maintaining, and protecting IT systems for start-ups and established businesses. For a flat monthly fee, we take care of your network, while you concentrate on growing your company.

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