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Security & Privacy

Cybersecurity: as crucial as your network connection

Even though your company may be small, that doesn’t mean it’s safe from cybersecurity attacks. Hackers often target smaller businesses because they are easier to breach, and the payoff is much greater. 

You must protect your company by implementing strong cybersecurity measures, so when choosing an Internet plan for your business, you need to think beyond just the provider with the best connection. You also need an effective network solution that provides 24/7 protection against cyberattacks, even though connectivity is essential.

This article will discuss the importance of cybersecurity and how you can keep your business safe from attacks.

The increase in cybercrime

Information theft is the most expensive and fastest-growing crime on the Internet. This is largely due to people putting more of their personal and business information online through cloud storage services. Data processed by third-party and fourth-party vendors may also be at risk if they don’t have good cybersecurity practices in place.

However, data isn’t the only thing that can be attacked. Cybercriminals can also target industrial controls that manage power grids and other infrastructure and try to steal people’s identities. 

Keep in mind that stealing information is not the only goal of cyberattacks; some attacks may aim to cause distrust in an organization or government by damaging or changing data.

The average cost of cybercrime for an organization has increased by $1.4 million over the last year to $13 million, while the average number of data breaches rose by 11 percent to 145. Information risk management has never been more important, so ensure you take the necessary precautions to protect your data.

website with crime scene tape

What is network security?

Network security is the practice of protecting your network infrastructure from unauthorized access or theft. This includes creating a secure infrastructure for anything connected to your network, including users, devices, or software applications. A RADIUS server can be an excellent addition to your company’s network security strategy. It is also often called an AAA server, which stands for “Authentication, Authorization, and Accounting”. RADIUS servers get the nickname AAA because it sums up what they do. They use an authentication protocol that grants or denies users access to a range of services, including Wi-Fi, VPN, and applications.

When choosing a network security solution, you need to consider the type of data you’re trying to protect. For example, if you’re a healthcare organization, you’ll need to comply with HIPAA regulations, and your network must be able to encrypt patient data.

There are many types of cybersecurity network solutions available, so it’s important to choose the right one for your business. Some common solutions include firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and encryption.

padlock in front of books

Protecting your business from cyberattacks

Here are some tips to help you protect your business from a cyberattack:

1. Assess your current network 

The first step in establishing an effective cybersecurity system is to assess your current network, which will help you identify any weaknesses that hackers could exploit. Once you’ve identified these vulnerabilities, you can start to put measures in place to protect your network.

One of the best ways to protect your network is to use a firewall. Firewalls act as a barrier between your network and the outside world. Incorporating a cloud firewall can add an extra layer of security, safeguarding your data from various cyber threats. They can help block incoming traffic from malicious sources and prevent sensitive data from leaving your network.

Another effective measure is to use intrusion detection systems. These systems constantly monitor your network for suspicious activity and raise the alarm when something is detected so that you can protect your data.

Finally, you should consider encrypting your data, which will make it much harder for hackers to access your information if they do manage to breach your network.

2. Invest in cybersecurity training for your employees

Another essential step in protecting your business is investing in cybersecurity training for your employees—including virtual assistants, freelancers, or anyone else with access to your data or systems. With phishing attacks accounting for over 75% of security breaches, your employees need to know how to spot the signs of phishing attempts and other cyberattacks and what to do if they suspect their computer has been infected.

Hackers are constantly finding new ways to exploit vulnerabilities. Your staff should be up-to-date on the latest cybersecurity threats. They should also know how to keep their passwords secure and use two-factor authentication when logging into company systems. 

Regular training sessions will help to ensure that your employees are aware of the dangers of cyberattacks and know how to protect your network.

Hedgehog and pigeon suiting up to fight cybercrime

3. Create a security response team to address any potential issues

Cyberattacks can happen any time, morning or night, and they can often be successful even when your web developer or IT consultant is doing everything they can to stay on top of things. Having a more specialized security response team can significantly affect how effectively your company responds to a complex cyberattack.

Your small business’s security response team should consist of individuals from different departments within your company. This way, you’ll have a team familiar with your systems and who can work together to address any issues quickly.

The team should have a clear plan of action for how to counter a cyberattack. They should also have access to the resources they need, such as malware removal software and data backup solutions.

Make sure your business has a policy of your security team conducting regular drills, which will help ensure that your security response team is prepared to deal with a real attack. This way, you can be confident that they’ll be able to identify and resolve any issues quickly.

4. Invest in a solid cybersecurity vendor 

When you partner with a reputable third-party cybersecurity vendor to manage your security efforts, you’ll have access to their expert knowledge and resources. They can help you resolve any issues that arise quickly and provide you with the latest information on new threats.

The most important thing is to properly assess a vendor before you hire them. To do this, you need to decide which cybersecurity functions you will outsource and come up with a detailed list of questions to ask the vendor. If you don’t know what specific questions should be asked, you can rely on industry-standard security vendor questionnaires (such as the Vendor Security Alliance Full Questionnaire). 

Small businesses used to be worried about the cost of getting full-service cybersecurity, but now, things have changed. Full-service cybersecurity is very flexible and can be customized to the needs of small businesses. Now, even the smallest businesses can afford to invest in better security and shield themselves from cyberattacks so that they can spend their efforts and money on other aspects of their business.

Final thoughts

Cybersecurity is essential for any business, no matter its size. By taking steps to protect your network, you can help keep your data safe from hackers. Cybersecurity is an ongoing process, so you must be prepared to update your security measures regularly. It’s also important to remember that cybersecurity is not just the responsibility of your IT team. Every employee needs to be aware of the dangers of cyberattacks and know how to protect their network. By working together, you can help keep your business safe from hackers.

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Gary Stevens avatar

Gary Stevens

Gary Stevens is a web developer and technology writer. He's a part-time blockchain geek and a volunteer working for the Ethereum foundation as well as an active Github contributor. More articles written by Gary.

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