If you are doing business online, then you should be aware of major cyber risks and protect yourself beforehand. Handling business online is time-saving and cost-effective. Still, there are no perfect things in the world, especially in the globalized internet world. Facing different cyber threats is a major worry that many owners of online businesses experience. This may result in many negative consequences that are still easy to prevent.
Hackers can get priority because they are ready to attack, and you are not. The necessity of being prepared usually arises after the actual cyberattack has been already made and a person has experienced a data leak or similar negative consequences. What can this be? This may be broken deals, lost customers or employees, or even damaged IT and hardware systems. Such an attack may stop work for a couple of days or even weeks.
And many business owners have faced the necessity of online business security after experiencing these things. In this situation, the major points are not being reckless and arrange adding a VPN extension to Chrome at least. Hackers are looking for easy cases to tackle. If you don’t have at least this extension, you risk appearing in the target group.
How do you protect yourself as a business owner?
You may naturally think about what you should do to arrange a more or less secured environment. The foremost point here is understanding what kind of information you are requesting and storing later. It is necessary to identify correct measures for securing the information stored. Our suggestion here is not to request any excessive information that you will not use. Audit your informational policy and not only.
First of all, it is necessary to think about security software that may help you with detecting possible cyber threats. These are firewalls and antivirus software, at least. VPN applications and software also will serve you well. But, you should also think about the separate secured server where you can store sensitive and other data important for business.
What is one of the most effective measures? Adopting SSL encryption is a measure that can be effective for securing your online store well. This adds safety to all types of activities carried out on your website. Two-factor authentication is a thing that should also be implemented for better security of all accesses and actions. Also, think about arranging a separate network for your payment terminal. This can secure your payments and money.
Arranging authorization for a fewer number of employees may help you a lot. This may help you decrease dangers dramatically as cybercriminals usually get access to payment systems through the infected emails of employees. In the suggested case, you will need to arrange extra security for a couple of devices only. But, must-have things for your business security are VPN services, firewalls, antivirus, and other protective software. Install such as soon as you can find time for those.
Apart from technical and software aspects of dealing with information and payments, it is also better to think well about applying different security measures, for instance:
- Changing passwords and usernames every 90 days may be very helpful. The longer you have the same passwords – the more risks you can face
- Limit access to systems where important details are stored only to those employees who strongly need such access
- Arrange training for your employees about major security threats and effective actions during possible attacks or similar threats
- Scan periodically all devices you have
- Delete personal information you don’t need to use anymore
- Verify your website periodically for compliance with security standards, like PCI
- Regularly make backup copies of all important details you have. But, in this case, it is better to be moderate as more copies you have – more spots you should secure better
- Don’t use public Wi-Fi networks and limit the access to the Internet from the work computers of your employees
- Invite IT specialists periodically for monitoring your IT system and apply extra measures to protect information related to your online business
More precise advice should always be developed, taking into account the specifics of your business and the data you deal with. But, before you reach any IT specialists, some points should work already, like antivirus and VPN service at least.
How can I legally protect my small business?
There is a last one portion of the information that you should take into consideration also. If you experience cyber threats, you should also think about the legal consequences of such. This may encourage applying security measures and also carrying out these measures for legal audit:
- Develop internal standards and guides for your employees. Monitor the online activities of your business
- Make your business GDPR compliant to protect the personal details of not only EU residents but also other users too
- Think about getting business insurance – in case of problematic situations, you will get compensation and prove your good faith in the hazardous situations from the point of cybersecurity that may potentially appear
- Create a legal entity for better trustworthy and secure your business name. Apply all possible registrations that exist in your jurisdiction and can be workable for you
- Add legal documents that cover aspects of dealing with personal details to your website
So, do these online business security measures appear to be too complicated to apply? This may take time, of course. But, this may also save you a lot and make you far less vulnerable to various cyber threats existing on the internet. These are threats that can cause missed deals and prevent your business growth. Avoid those. Stay safe. Stay secured.