Businesses of all sizes, from small operations to international corporations, are coming to terms with the growing threat of cyber-security. The rate of attacks is rapidly increasing, and hackers are targeting bigger and bigger targets like governments and universities, looking to steal private information and intellectual property. Small businesses are often targeted with ransomware attacks since hackers know how much is at stake for organisations without expensive insurance policies and comprehensive recovery procedures. As more businesses migrate their data storage to cloud services, hackers become wiser to exploiting any and all vulnerabilities a business may have. Resisting cyber-attacks is not impossible, however, and with some forward planning and employment of latest security techniques, all businesses can create strong cyber security practices. Below we look at the three ways you can find out if your business is at risk of a cyber-attack.
Review Your Security Policy
Many businesses have some guiding principles in place for security breaches but not enough, especially small companies, have a solid policy in place that’s known to all staff. It’s very important to stay up to date with all the latest developments in the world of cyber-security and provide relevant training on phishing scams, data storage, passwords, and more. Having a written security policy in place, one that’s issued to new employees and updated regularly for all to see, is the essential first step to better overall security. Other things to include are contact details of the best person to inform of a suspected data or security breach and any back-up procedures to implement should an attack take place. The process of creating a security policy, if you don’t have one already, will provide a general overview of whether your business can withstand a cyber-attack.
Test Your Security
Your business may already have a strong security policy in place, on paper, but have you ever tested this? The likely answer is ‘no’ and the first time you’ll actually learn of your security measures’ effectiveness is after a cyber-attack. A better way, one that doesn’t expose your business to risk, is through the employment of penetration testing. This method of testing aims to exploit all your security system’s vulnerabilities by employing the latest hacking technologies. This ensures that your business can withstand a range of different attacks and is a great way of getting a realistic picture of just how vulnerable your business really is. Results obtained during penetration testing can be used in the future to create a better cyber-security approach for your business and safeguard against unexpected attacks.
Test Your Staff
Great security measures and staff training are essential but so is testing your staff’s ability to recognise phishing emails and scams. Consider sending out a few versions of a phishing or scam email to different employees to see how they act in that situation. Ideally, they spot them early and follow the relevant security procedure (as discussed above). Should any staff members fall for the emails then it’s still a great opportunity for learning and further training; observe how they react when they realise that they were victim to an attack and whether they know how to best report and deal with the situation. Another important aspect to test staff on is general cyber-security knowledge; as technology moves fast it’s unrealistic to expect everyone to stay up to date and quizzes can be a great way of letting staff know which areas of knowledge they should brush up on.