In this article, Jonathan Cundliffe, Managing Director of J700 Group an IT Support provider and cyber security specialist based in Lancashire explores a topic that might give you the chills—cybersecurity skeletons in the closet.
You may not have old skeletons hidden away, however there’s a good chance of cybersecurity vulnerabilities lurking, waiting to wreak havoc and cause severe issues.
You can’t fix what you can’t see, so we shine a light on these hidden dangers. To enable you to take action to protect your business from potential cyber threats.
Let’s get started uncovering threats that could leave your business in danger. Here are some of the most common cybersecurity issues faced by SMBs.
Outdated Software: The Cobweb-Covered Nightmare
Updating software can be a hassle. But running outdated software is like inviting hackers to your virtual Halloween party.
When software vendors release updates, they often include crucial security patches. These patches fix vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. So, don’t let outdated software haunt your business. Keep everything up to date to ensure your digital fortress is secure.
Weak Passwords: The Skeleton Key for Cybercriminals
If your passwords are weak, you might as well be handing out your office keys to cyber criminals. Using “123456” or “password” as your login credentials is a big no-no.
Instead, create strong and unique passwords for all accounts and devices. Consider using a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters. Password managers can be a lifesaver for generating and storing complex passwords securely.
As a business owner, you can’t expect your employees to do this naturally. Provide your staff with requirements for creating passwords. You can also set up software to force strong password creation.
Unsecured Wi-Fi: The Ghostly Gateway
Picture this: a cybercriminal sitting in a parked car. He’s snooping on your business’s unsecured Wi-Fi network. Scary, right? Unsecured Wi-Fi can be a ghostly gateway for hackers to intercept sensitive data. To help secure your Wi-Fi:
- Ensure your Wi-Fi is password-protected.
- Make sure your router uses WPA2 or WPA3 encryption for an added layer of security.
- For critical business tasks consider a virtual private network (VPN) as it can protect your data from prying eyes.
Lack of Employee Training: The Haunting Ignorance
Your employees can be your business’s strongest line of defense or its weakest link. Employee error is the cause of around 88% of all data breaches.
Without proper cybersecurity training, your staff might unknowingly fall victim to phishing scams. Or inadvertently expose sensitive information. Regularly educate your team about cybersecurity best practices such as:
- Recognising phishing emails
- Avoiding suspicious websites
- Using secure file-sharing methods
No Data Backups: The Cryptic Catastrophe
Embrace the 3-2-1 rule. Have at least three copies of your data, stored on two different media types. With one copy stored securely offsite. Regularly test your backups to ensure they are functional and reliable.
Imagine waking up to find your business’s data gone, vanished into the digital void. Without backups, this nightmare can become a reality. Data loss can be due to hardware failures or ransomware attacks. As well as many other unforeseen disasters.
No Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): The Ghoulish Gamble
Using only a password to protect your accounts is asking for trouble. It’s like having nothing but a screen door at the entrance of your business.
Adding MFA provides an extra layer of protection. It requires users to provide extra authentication factors. Such as a one-time code or passkey. This makes it much harder for cyber attackers to breach your accounts.
Disregarding Mobile Security: The Haunted Phones
Mobile devices have become office workhorses, however they can also be haunted by security risks.
You should ensure all company-issued devices have passcodes or biometric locks enabled.
Also consider implementing mobile device management (MDM) solutions. These will allow you to enforce security policies, along with the ability to remotely wipe data and ensure devices stay up to date.
Shadow IT: The Spooky Surprise
Shadow IT refers to the use of unauthorised applications within your business. It might seem harmless when employees use convenient tools they find online. However these unvetted applications can pose serious security risks.
To mitigate this you should:
- Put in place a clear policy for the use of software and services within your business.
- Regularly audit your systems to uncover any shadow IT lurking under cover.
Incident Response Plan: The Horror Unleashed
Even with all precautions in place, security incidents can still happen. Without an incident response plan, an attack can leave your business in trouble.
Develop a comprehensive incident response plan. It should outline key details such as; how your team will detect, respond to, and recover from security incidents. Regularly test and update your businesses plan to ensure its effectiveness.
Need Some “Threat Busters” to Improve Your Cybersecurity?
Don’t let cybersecurity skeletons in the closet haunt your business.
J700 Group can help you find and fix potential vulnerabilities. As well as create a robust security attitude that protects your business.
Give one of our expert cybersecurity team a call today or contact us to schedule a free cybersecurity assessment for your business.
J700 Group provide effective IT support and services that enable your business to have secure, responsive and reliable information technology, keeping it running smoothly 24/7. Above this though, we are a family run company who truly care about our customer service and the business relationships we develop.
J700 Group are a Lancashire-based, family-run, professional and responsive, Managed Solutions Provider helping Businesses, to utilise Innovative IT Consultancy Services, Cloud Solutions, Cyber Security, Microsoft 365, Telecoms, Web Design and SEO solutions to propel their organisation to the next level and beyond.
As an experienced IT Support Provider, helping businesses across Lancashire & Manchester, if you need any assistance with your IT including IT Hardware, a Disaster Recovery Policy or Managed Backup Solutions please get in touch with one of our team.
Where to find us: Prinny Mill Business Centre, 68 Blackburn Road, Haslingden, Lancashire, BB4 5HL.
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