Don’t Let Your Office Be the Next Breach
Security breaches are becoming more common as hackers continuously find ways to access our information. With the recent Equifax breach, Americans are struggling to maintain some level of security when it comes to their information. As an employer, it is your responsibility to not only protect private company information, but also any information pertaining to your employees and clients. Here are a few pointers to ensure that your company isn’t the next one to be hit with a security breach.
- Invest in Protection Software
If you don’t currently have protection software installed on all of your company’s computers (including laptops), now is the time to make the investment and purchase firewall and antivirus software. Notice the word “purchase”. This is important to note because while there are plenty of free basic antivirus software programs available, they will not offer your business the amount of coverage necessary to protect confidential information.
- Upgrade Software Periodically
Once you have made the investment in protection software, get the most out of it by completing any recommended upgrades to keep it up to date and working smoothly. New and improved viruses are created daily, making a missed upgrade an opportunity for new viruses to infect company computers.
- Avoid Personal Browsing
Since malicious software, also known as “malware”, can infect your computer by posing as a seemingly normal website or link, it is important that employees are aware of the websites that they frequent and links that they click on while using company computers. Social media sites and emails are notorious for links that lead to viruses, so make sure that employees are only using company computers for work related purposes.
- Create Unique Passwords
Although “password1234” may be easy to remember, it is also easy for hackers to anticipate. Keeper Security found that in 2016, “123456”, “password”, and “qwerty” were all top passwords used. Instead of creating easy passwords, try making unique passwords by using a combination of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers and special characters.
- Limit Access
Employees do not need unlimited access to company and client information, and should only have access to files and information that they need to do their job effectively. By limiting access, you are also limiting the chance that sensitive information will fall into the wrong hands.
- Hire a Professional
When in doubt (especially if technology isn’t your strong suit), hire a professional. An outside source that specializes in protecting information can help you to set up and maintain a protection plan for your office.
- Don’t Autosave
When asked if you want to save information online, the answer should always be a resounding “no”. From credit card information to passwords, it may seem easier to save your information and shave time off of the next time you need to log in or make an online purchase; however, saving your information online makes you vulnerable to a security breach.
- Educate Employees
Part of protecting company and client information is educating employees on how they can prevent lapses in protection. Have that IT person that you hired to set up your protection plan talk to your employees about what they can be doing better, and what to avoid to protect company, client and personal information.
Online security breaches are a real threat for companies, and even with the best protection programs in place it is still possible to be hacked. If you become aware that company or client information has been breached, follow up with an IT professional and notify the individuals affected so that they can make the necessary steps to protect their information moving forward.