Have you viewed the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse database recently? Here you can find the latest security breaches reported. A quick perusal revealed security breaches at massive organizations such as IRS and FDIC as well as across the whole spectrum of public and private organizations. Everyone appears to be a target including public schools, medical providers, contractors, marketing companies, hotels, software companies, and even grocery stores.
Recent high profile hacks have involved everything from ransomware to data breaches. Though devastating to those affected, these hacks have raised awareness. Businesses of all sizes are learning that many of these incidents are preventable. Below are five tips you can implement right away to improve your business’s network security and maximize data security:
- Require frequent password changes — with highly secure passwords: The days of using passwords such as “password” or “fido2016” should be long gone, but unfortunately, users continue to use weak passwords. Some use the same passwords across all of their accounts, and have used the same ones for years on end. We understand why, but it’s a horrible practice from a security standpoint. To ensure that your employees use complex passwords consisting of a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and characters and change them often, ask Quikteks to recommend an enterprise password manager. This will enforce security, yet make it easy on your users.
- Keep an eye on access: Access logs tell you exactly who has accessed your network, when they accessed it, and from where. Do your logs look suspicious? For example, if your network administrator is in the building, but the access logs say he or she just signed in and accessed the network from Russia, that could be a sign that you’ve been hacked. Once a hacker has administrative login credentials, the potential for damage is high as all of your other security measures will be bypassed.
- Set user roles and permissions: Do your employees have full run of the network? They shouldn’t. Setting up user roles and permissions ensures that every employee has access to the information they need, but only the information they need. Nothing more, nothing less. Setting these limits adds an extra layer of protection in ensuring that critical information remains safe from prying eyes.
- Set up basic computer security: By now, you should have some sort of computer security set up across your network. If you don’t, you’re asking for trouble. Even the most basic computer security technologies can make a huge difference in protecting your data. We recommend a suite of cyber security tools including a firewall, spam filter, antivirus software, and a web content blocker. This “Unified Threat Management” suite combats threats at their source and provides tools for dealing with attempts as they occur.
- Maintain and monitor computer security: Hundreds of thousands of new threats are released every day, making it important to keep your computer security software updated with the latest defenses. That said, you probably use a lot of software in your business and these also must be maintained and monitored. Keeping up with updates and security patches is a task in and of itself, and it’s not always easy to figure out which systems are out of date. Using out-of-date applications and software could expose your business to risk of both potential data breaches and regulatory compliance violations. Fortunately, Quikteks can remotely monitor and maintain your business’s network for any new developments or issues. In addition to resolving these issues, we can also update and patch your operating systems, computer security software, and other software and applications across your network.
For more information about improving your network security, contact Quikteks at (973) 882-4644.