Money For Lunch – 7 Ways to Protect Your Business from Cyber Criminals

7 Ways to Protect Your Business from Cyber Criminals

December 14, 2016 6:36 AM0 commentsViews: 20

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Photo by Masa Israel Journey / CC BY-ND 2.0

No business, regardless of size, is safe from data breach and theft. This is why it’s important to observe proper safety precautions when transacting online and storing sensitive data on computers. Below are some tips you can follow to protect your enterprise:

  1. Keep Your Employees from Visiting Sketchy Websites

This may seem self-explanatory, but a lot of people actually overlook safe browsing. When you go to a sketchy website, viruses and malware can silently hack their way into your system. And before you know it, sensitive information stored on your computer has been compromised.

Save yourself from the trouble of having to reformat your whole network and repairing the damage done by these hackers. Don’t allow your employees to visit these kinds of websites in the first place.

But in case that they do and you find your business in a rut, don’t worry. You can always use a reputation management service like MyLife to rebuild your online image.

  1. Run a Regular Antivirus Scan

Certain types of viruses like ransomware steal tax data and other sensitive financial information. Ransomware crawls through your files, locks your system, then asks for payment for you to be able to access your files again.

Make sure your data is always protected by doing an antivirus scan at least once a week. This will help you get rid of viruses and malware before they get a chance to take over your computer.

  1. Disable Macros in Your Microsoft Office Files

Scripts embedded in ransomware need to work with the macros in your Microsoft Office documents to successfully hack into your device or machine. Disabling macros in your files will prevent this type of malware from running and corrupting your machine.

  1. Mind your Downloads

Beware when downloading files with double file extensions or those ending in “.exe”. Or better yet, don’t download them at all. These documents are often used to circulate malware that can harm your computer.

If you must receive executable files like these, ask the sender to send them using a .zip file format instead. It’s safer and more secure that way.

5.Enable Full Disk Encryption on Company Devices

You can also enable full disk encryption on company computers so that cyber criminals will have no way to clone your hard drive. Use BitLocker for Windows or enable FileVault for Mac to do so. These full disk encryption programs scramble all the vital information in your drive so that it’s practically impossible to understand. They also guard your downloaded email messages, passwords, browser history, and chat logs from thieves.

  1. Encrypt USB Flash Drives and External Hard Drives

Your company’s USB flash drives and external hard drives are just as susceptible to cyber criminals as your computers. In fact, due to their small size, they’re easier for thieves to take a hold of. Just so your business’ information is safe, make sure you encrypt the data stored in these devices so that only authorized people can access it.

  1. Keep Your Cloud Storage Well-Guarded

Cloud storage services make it easy to share files remotely with a client or coworker. However, data in cloud storage devices is prone to leaking out or being stolen. Encrypt the data you upload or use a cloud program that can manage that setting for you.

If you must share your files remotely, you can use peer-to-peer private synchronization services like BitTorrent sync to maintain the integrity of your documents.

Technology provides various ways to make running a business easier. But if you’re not careful, it can make it easy for cyber criminals to attack your business. So always be safe. Practice the tips above to make sure that no one (except for authorized people) can access your sensitive company information.

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