A little planning goes a long was when it comes to securing and protecting your business technology and data. Here are 3 things you can do to minimize the risk of data loss and security breaches:
Backup strategy and execution:
Do you have data security policy? Are your data backups properly configured and tested? Data Loss is the number #1 killer of small business. In fact, most small businesses are without data security policies and not prepared for a data loss event. Data provided by the Washington, D.C firm Clutch shows that 60% of SMB’s that suffer a substantial data loss will shut down within six months. Make sure all necessary network resources are part of your backup plan and and test device backups by restoring data. If your frequently add desktops, mobile or server hardware to your network make sure you add these resources to your backup and data security plan before putting them on your network. After creating a plan, test your backups randomly at regular intervals to ensure you they are working correctly. You will be thankful you did.
Strong Password Policies:
Password Policies are frequently overlooked in a small to medium business setting. There are a few things that can be done to minimize this security risk. First off, you need to create a strong and consistent password policy. The policy should require a combination of upper and lowercase letters, symbols, and numbers. In addition, the policy should require password changes at the minimum on a quarterly basis. Windows Servers have configuration options to automate this by requiring employees to update passwords at defined intervals. Your engineer should be able to assist in configuring this for you. On your company wireless network establish a strong WI-FI password to ensure that your wireless network is secure. When new devices or software applications are deployed on your network they often come out of the box with default access credentials. Routers, CCTV systems are often initially set up this way so it is important to create new access credentials on these devices. Finally, do not share resource passwords. You are probably thinking right now about that old, outdated network resource or application that everybody uses to print those “TPS” reports. If you have you have a resource that does not allow multiple user accounts and passwords, allow only yourself and another employee access.
Regular Security Updates:
Business software applications, hardware, operating systems, and mobile devices need to be updated on a regular basis. It is important to establish an inventory of all resources being used on your business network. Once you have a documented inventory, create a schedule to perform these security updates. Make sure Windows, firewall, mobile devices and other Software applications are included in these updates. Ensure that new devices, computers and network resources have the latest firmware and updates before adding to your small business network. Some of these updates can be automated but are best performed during downtime to minimize business disruptions.
The above suggestions are a good start to creating an effective backup, password and security strategy. These can be done rather quickly to improve your Data and IT Security posture. It is also important to create secure documentation for backups, password policies, and security updates. Review these plans quarterly and make changes as needed.
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