Having a home-based business means you are online. And in today’s day and age, with cybersecurity threats on the rise, it has never been more important to keep your business safe. What’s the point in putting all of your efforts into developing a business, only to have it hacked and taken away in the blink of an eye? Cybersecurity defenses are a must, and the best method is to have a multi-faceted approach to keep on top of oncoming threats. Here we run through our best practices to help keep your business afloat in a forever unstable cyber world.
Up-To-Date Anti-Virus Software
Malware and viruses are a computer’s worst nightmare. These can infect and spread to all devices, from computers and mobiles to laptops. Those running a business from home should make sure that all devices have only the most up-to-date anti-virus and anti-spy software installed. Emphasis should be put on the word latest, because it is only the latest security software that comes with the most up-to-date uncrackable firewalls, to give your business the best defense against viruses, malware and so on. You can even set your security software to update automatically, so you don’t have to even think about it. If 2017’s Wannacry Ransomware attack taught us anything, it was the importance of keeping systems updated (it was only those who hadn’t downloaded Microsoft’s latest update that were affected by the malicious attack).
Fortify Your Accounts
All of your online accounts should be equipped with the strongest authentication tools around. Usernames and passwords are no longer strong enough to protect essential business accounts, unless you are managing them properly, that is! By that, we mean regularly changing them, as well as making them very hard to decipher. The best way to go about doing this is to use a secure password manager, which will be able to remember all of your passwords for you and even give you randomized strong password suggestions, to make them impossible to crack.
If you see an option for “two-step authentication” this is something to grab hold of – the more, the merrier. There are other strong authentication tools that you could use, such as security keys and biometrics, that are also worth looking into.
Back Up Your Data
This one seems obvious, but you’d be surprised how few people remember to keep their information backed up. If you were to lose your data in a cyber attack, the after-effects could be mitigated by simply having a solid backup. We are talking about financial records, business plans, customer data and more, none of which you want to lose. Be sure to back your data up on a daily basis, be it through storing it in the cloud, or even using a portable external device (USB or external drive). On top of your daily backups, make sure to also do weekly, monthly and yearly server backups. A multi backup approach will ensure that you are always in the clear. And if you want to be extra safe, double check every now and then how easy it is for you to retrieve your backed-up information. There’s not much use in backing up your data if you aren’t able to access it, is there?
Encrypt Your Data
When sending private data across the internet, encryption is essential in making sure that only those who you have approved are able to access it. Encryption involves the conversion of your private data into a scrambled code before it is sent over the unsecure internet. This hugely reduces the risk of tampering and theft. To avoid this, be sure to turn on your network encryption and stay on the safe side.
Use a VPN
Another great and easy way to encrypt your data is through the use of a VPN (Virtual Private Network). A VPN does more than just encrypt your data. It allows users to select an external server from almost any country, allowing the user to geo-spoof their location as well as gain access to geo-blocked content. More than that, it will hide your true IP address, making it near impossible for third parties to spy on your internet habits. It’s a location spoofer and one of the best identity theft protection services you’ll ever see. This means you can effectively browse the internet anonymously and share data without the threat of hacking.
By having updated anti-virus software in place, you will be sure to keep common cyber attacks at bay. But the more layers of protection you have the better, and adding a VPN to the mix will prevent hackers from sneaking their way into your data. On top of that, fortifying your accounts plus having a backup for that ‘just in case’ scenario will arm your business with the best protection it can get.
Source: New feed