IT security is a major concern for many businesses, whether it is keeping sensitive customer data safe, or preventing unsavory people from accessing files on the hot new product you are developing. Unfortunately, there is no way to absolutely guarantee protection against security breaches. But, there are certainly steps you can take to minimize the risk as much as possible. Here are just a few ways to keep your company’s information safe and sound.
Run Regular Virus Scans
This may be one of those tips that elicits a big old ‘’duh,’’ but a recent survey found that over 75 percent of business computers examined had viruses on them. So, it is obvious that loads of people are not heeding this common-sense tip. Many viruses are somewhat harmless in the grand scheme of things (which is probably why most people don’t feel a sense of urgency to run protections), but if your computers get hit by a bad one, you could be looking at a major problem as far as the safety of your data is concerned. This is a relatively simple fix that offers one of your best defenses so don’t ignore it.
Implement a IT Security Policy
If you have not specifically outlined how employees should be handling data, you may be putting it at risk of exposure. Any business serious about protecting sensitive information will take the time to craft an IT security policy that explicitly outlines how staff should handle the myriad data, such as customer information and an acceptable use policy for email and internet usage. Limit access to specific types of data to only those people who must absolutely be able to see it—block anyone else.
Consider the Cloud
Moving email communication and data storage to the cloud is one such way to maximize data security. Typical email clients send data un-encrypted; messages can easily be read by anyone with physical access to the computer or other devices. Even if you took stringent steps on your end to secure standard email communication, you can’t control what is happening on the receiving end of those communications, whether with clients, vendors or anything else.
As for all your other data, virtual storage in a cloud typically offers greater protections than what you can provide on your own. This is particularly true for smaller businesses which typically don’t have the financial resources or technical know-how to optimally secure in-house servers. Servers stored on-site are also vulnerable to numerous threats from theft to the cleaning staff. Because security is a primary concern for businesses when it comes to storing their data virtually, cloud service providers have developed, and continue to develop, stringent security measures to keep their customer’s data safe.
Be Open to Change
Many businesses experience problems due to the simple fact that that people are resistant to change. There is a strong desire to maintain the status quo and keeping doing everything as it has been done. This can be a kiss of death for a business, and negatively impact everything about the operation from marketing to network security. When it comes to keeping your business data secure, be willing to embrace new technologies and programs if it means providing more protection than your current methods may be offering. Change is one constant in life and refusal to evolve and do things in a new way could be unnecessarily putting your data at risk.