Why cybersecurity is crucial for every small business
Small business owners can access resources to build a strong defense against hackers
While the news may cover data breaches and hacks against bigger players in the biz, believe it or not most cyberattacks target small- and medium-sized businesses, who are considered easier targets by cyber criminals.
"Businesses of every size are potential targets," says Chris Keenan, senior director of sales with Dell Technologies in Canada. "The goods news is, even if you don't have a lot of resources to spend on cybersecurity, it's easy to deploy simple, cost-effective strategies that can go a long way to help defend the livelihood of your business."
According to Dell Technologies, 35 per cent of all hacks are the result of human error and carelessness. In one of its surveys, the findings also reveal that 72 per cent of employees are willing to share confidential data with people outside the company, while 41 per cent attempt to work around existing company security protocols.
Signs of a cyber risk and how to prevent them
Small businesses can strengthen their security blanket by training employees to value and understand basic cybersecurity to make them feel prepared for any kind of situation.
"Many hackers use email attachments as entry points," says Keenan. "Employees need to be trained to recognize unusual email addresses or suspicious messages from people and organizations they don't know. At Dell Technologies, we educate our team by generating emails with these characteristics and send them internally to make sure we're all aware of the ingredients for these types of malware recipes. But not to worry, everything's safe. If we open them, all we get is a friendly reminder from IT to refresh our cyberthreats checklist for next time."
Secure solutions for your small business
According to Keenan, one of the most cost-effective protections for small businesses is simply keeping operating systems and software up to date in order to deploy the latest security features and patches. Old and unused software, which is basically every hacker's dream, should be deleted.
Making sure your company network is secure is just as important as each individual device. A team is only as strong as it's weakest link, right? Password managers can store and protect login credentials, as well as generate secure passwords for ongoing updates. A virtual private network (VPN) can help keep business communications protected, which extends to any devices used by team members working remotely. Technology should also be updated to take advantage of the latest security improvements and developments.
"We lean on our 'Trusted Devices' which includes notebooks and PCs with features that make them inherently safer out-of-the-box," says Keenan. "These features include biometric technology, such as fingerprint readers, hard drives that encrypt data by default, two-factor identification, anti-virus software and next-generation malware protection. Dell SafeID also provides an additional layer of protection with hardware-based security for information such as passwords, biometric information and security codes."
From supply chain management to product inventory, small businesses already have so much on their plates. That's why Dell Technologies Advisors are available free of charge via phone or online to help any small business owner maintain a strong security posture while developing a resilient and robust business infrastructure.
"If you need to install a company firewall device to keep bad actors out of your network, set up a VPN, back up your data, or install your own server – we'll help you to look at your options," says Keenan. "Whether you're a big business, or a small business with limited resources, there are always easy solutions to get it done and make sure your business is secure every day of the week."
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