How To Protect Your Business From Hackers
In analysis / By Mark Flynn / 15 August 2018
It doesn't matter how much you spend on great cybersecurity technology, the people within your business are typically the weakest link when it comes to security.
It might be an employee clicking on a bad link, falling for a phishing attack, using a weak password, or neglecting to install a security update in a timely manner - all of these scenarios could put your business at risk.
Alarmingly, 75% of organisations have suffered a staff-related security breach where employees are tricked into clicking on a link, opening an attachment from a phishing email or conned into giving information to what they believe is a trusted source.
The cornerstone of good cybersecurity is a properly educated workforce. It is imperative to get your staff properly trained to identify a hacking attempt and turn them into your best and the first line of defence for your business.
Here are 6 things your staff need to have on their radar if you want to protect your business from hackers.
Be wary of email attachments
A common method cybercriminals use to hack into devices is to send emails with infected attachments. People are tricked into opening these attachments because they appear to come from someone or something they know and trust. Only open email attachments that you are expecting. Not sure about an email? Call the person to confirm they sent it.
Never respond to emails asking for personal information
The companies that you do business with on a regular basis should never ask for your account information, credit card numbers or password in an email. If you have any questions about an email that supposedly came from your financial institution or service provider, find their number on their website and call them.
Social media and security are not always the best of friends
The more information you post online about yourself, the easier it is for a cyber attacker to target you and create custom attacks against you or your organisation, be wary of over-sharing!
Your fridge could be your weakest link
This next one is something that is going to be a big problem in a few years but an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and as such you need to be careful about what you connect to your network now.
With the rise of the internet of things, there’s a temptation to connect everything to the network, however by doing so you risk opening up a lot of holes in your defence. You don’t want your cybersecurity to rely on your fridge's firewall!
Be aware of all the devices connected to your home network, including baby monitors, gaming consoles, TVs, appliances or even your car. Ensure all those devices are protected by a strong password and/or are running the latest version of their operating system.
Learn how to use public Wi-Fi safely
Make sure you are always using the real thing. The objective of the hackers is to gain your trust. For example, in a busy airport you might click on to the Wi-Fi, only it isn’t the official Wi-Fi, nothing obvious happens so you go on your way but whilst you were connected, the hackers could see everything you were doing and even add malware to the data you were downloading.
Beware of fake apps
With the migration to the cloud in full swing, every smartphone becomes a potential "in" for hackers. Securing these devices is next to impossible especially when you take into account the human element. However, you can set your business up to help stop hackers using these devices to gain access to your data.
An example of this is the recent trend of hackers adding fake apps to official app stores. These apps look like the real thing but in reality, they are just filled with malware designed to get at your bank details.
Your people are your greatest asset when it comes to cybersecurity so make sure everyone is cyber savvy and well-versed in cyber security 'do's' and 'don'ts.'