Technology is the driving force behind today’s businesses, but you need to make sure that the software and cloud solutions you are implementing to improve your productivity are working for you and not against you. While there are many benefits from the latest technologies, there are also plenty of risks that you need to be prepared for in order to protect your business, your customers, and your brand image.
Below are a few tips on how to get started with implementing IT security in your company:
Access Control Issues
When you are working with software and are providing access to your information and data to contractors, employees, and other partners, it’s important that you take care of data control. In case you have your own open source or private CRM, you will need to find a way to manage who can see what information. This will not only protect you from industrial espionage and internal fraud, but also set clear boundaries for employees so they know what they are allowed to do and what they are not on your computers.
When systems fail, you need to have a backup option or you’ll have business continuity issues. If you haven’t spoken to an IT professional yet, you should do so now. Automatic backups to an external hard drive or the Cloud will help you restore your systems and data, preventing system failure from jeopardizing your business.
When you’re installing a new system or database management software, it’s very important to check whether or not it is compatible with your current operating system and your servers. If you have an intranet site for your employees, you will need to optimize all types of content to prevent corrupted files that will cause your computers to stop working as they should be. If the wrong PHP version is installed on your server, it could cause your plugins to crash or your site to become unstable. So be sure to address the issue as soon as possible.
One thing every business owner needs to think about is the security of their website, because it is your virtual shop window, and if you’re putting users at risk by not taking care of security, you will damage your relationship with your market as well as your reputation. It is crucial that you get secure encryption (SSL) for your site, and scan your servers for viruses.
The most dangerous thing about malware is that it can often be invisible to the naked eye, and you don’t know that anything is wrong. But that’s not always the case. Malware can slow down your software, open back doors to your files, and even install spy software to steal customer information, download your files, or compromise your systems. This is why you should have a professional check your computers regularly for malware, spyware, and other unwanted software. It’s also recommended that you use a VPN whenever you’re visiting sites outside of your organization or using public networks.
When your website or systems are broken, you will not only make your business less effective, but also damage your reputation. Just imagine that your business computer mixes two clients together, sends out the wrong invoices, or overcharges customers. What would that tell them about their business? You have to ensure that you are creating the most perfect customer experience possible, or your clients will leave you.
When choosing a hosting company, it is crucial that you protect yourself from bad neighbors. If your site is hosted on the same web server as some dark web or black hat ones, you could be sending out the wrong message about yourself. One of the options is to get a dedicated server for hosting your online accounts and your website, so that you can prevent bad reputation by association. When you choose your domain name, you should always check whether or not there are similar domains registered that your visitors can mistake your company with.
Many business owners believe that they have little impact on how secure their servers are. If your site is hosted by a larger company, chances are that the software updates are being run regularly. However, smaller providers tend to be lax on stuff like this, and you will not notice installing an insecure plugin or theme until it is too late. Ideally, you will want your hosting provider to let you know when there is a problem with your site or your server before the issue escalates and your website crashes or disappears. Having a secure software will also help you prevent cyber breaches and protect your brand.
With the growing use of cloud computing, you need to understand the risks of storing files “in the cloud”. While larger storage account providers, such as GSuite and iCloud give you some of the most secure platforms around, you also need to take care of your data security on your end. Always set up secure passwords, control employees’ access, and run diagnostic software to identify potential dangers and threats.
If you want to make sure that technology is giving you more benefits than risks, you need to step up your game and look out for some of the danger areas mentioned above. Because while you can improve your productivity by implementing the latest technology, remember that it comes with it’s own set of risks.