You don’t need to hear many stories about hackers stealing information from companies before you start to wonder whether your small business has the security it needs to stay protected. Small businesses are often easy targets for thieves, so you should learn about these three ways to make your small business more secure.
Develop Effective BYOD Policies
Some research predicts that at least half of the world’s employers will require their employees to use personal devices at work by the end of 2016. BYOD saves money and makes employees more productive, so it makes sense for them to follow this trend.
BYOD also opens your business to security issues. For instance, if an employee loses an unencrypted device that contains private information, that info could fall into the hands of competitors or thieves.
You can make your small business more secure by setting BYOD policies that require encryption for all devices, encryption for company files, and a partition that keeps personal and business information separate.
Choose a Secure Cloud Service
The cloud has become such an important tool for businesses and individuals that you probably use it daily without even knowing it. Whether you distribute documents through Dropbox or use SaaS, you are relying on the cloud.
The cloud can present some serious security problems for small businesses that don’t protect themselves. However, you can make the cloud more secure by encrypting your data while it’s uploading to servers and after it has been stored. Since no one can read your files without the right encryption key, not even the cloud server can access your data.
Cloud technology will remain an important part of business success in many industries, so you should start thinking about how you will protect your private information.
Use Strong Passwords
Creating strong passwords is one of the easiest things you can do to make your small business more secure. Unfortunately, a lot of businesses aren’t serious about this level of security. Perhaps owners just don’t want to remember a lot of difficult passwords.
Choosing any password will immediately improve your security. As long as it isn’t “guest” or “password,” the average person won’t know how to access files on your computers. A decent hacker, however, will use software that tries to crack your password. When that happens, you need significantly stronger options to keep you safe.
There are a few tricks that easily will improve password security:
- It should have at least 12 characters.
- It should include numbers, symbols, capital letters, and lowercase letters.
- It shouldn’t include a word found in the dictionary.
- It shouldn’t use obvious substitutions, such as replacing O with 0.
Human brains have difficulty remembering the best passwords, so you may want to use a password manager or a technique that helps people recall them.
Large corporations aren’t the only businesses that need to worry about computer security. Some hackers focus on small businesses because many of them don’t spend enough time choosing smart security resources. Don’t make yourself an easy target for a thief.