No matter the size of your business, you need to grasp the risks and security measures involved with doing business online. In fact, cybersecurity is just as important for small, self-owned businesses like yours as it is for massive enterprises with millions of dollars on the line.

What’s at Risk From a Cyber Attack?

In short, everything! A cyber attack can potentially gain access to:

  • Employee records
  • Financial data
  • Customers’ data or personal information
  • Business plans
  • Insider information

In essence, you can’t afford to take cybersecurity concerns lightly. Instead, you need to shore up your business defenses against malware, ransomware, and other cyber attacks. Cyber threats are evolving every year, so your defenses must also be modern, agile, and effective.

How to Avoid a Cybersecurity Breach

Fortunately, there are multiple ways in which you can avoid a cybersecurity breach.

Update Security Software

For starters, be sure to invest in and regularly update business-class security software, like firewalls, malware detectors and killers, and more. Make sure that, whenever your firewall or other security software requests an update, you allow it to proceed immediately.

Regular updates shore up your cyber defenses against evolving cyber threats and will prevent your firewall from being taken advantage of due to a gap in its code.

Practice Digital Hygiene

Next, make sure you and your employees practice digital hygiene. Digital hygiene is essentially any practice or procedure that can protect your business from malware or hackers. Examples include:

  • Not leaving employee ID badges lying around
  • Never sharing corporate usernames or passwords with anyone
  • Not opening suspicious emails (often called phishing emails)
  • Not browsing unsafe websites while at work

Avoid Public Networks

Lastly, you and your employees must avoid logging into company servers on unsecured, public networks, like the Wi-Fi at your favorite coffee shop. Even if you use a VPN, you’re still giving potential cybercriminals a backdoor into your company servers and allowing them to bypass your firewalls and other defensive software.

What to Do If Your Business Is Hit

No cybersecurity defense is perfect, which is why it’s important to have an effective data recovery plan if you’re ever attacked. A data recovery plan will allow you to:

  • Identify the most important applications to recover
  • Define time objectives
  • Determine which individuals should take charge of recovery efforts

Some data recovery plans will also leverage data backups to make sure that company or customer data is never fully lost or compromised.

Of course, a disaster recovery plan will require a great deal of time-consuming work that involves strategizing, researching, and testing various measures to find out what works best with your business. Make sure you can do these along with your other small business responsibilities by staying organized and being methodical in how you approach your to-do list. Here’s a monthly planner template that can help.

Cybersecurity Is Up to You

Ultimately, it’s up to you to take charge of your business’s cybersecurity and to ensure that you aren’t fined for losing customer data or personal information. The cybersecurity fight is always ongoing, but with the right plan and preparatory steps, your business will be safe against most major threats.

Find out how DigitalWires can help you create a secure and compliant website today!

Guest Post by Patricia Hill

Image via Pexels