Within an office setting, technology is present in different forms that could contain important information like documentation, finances, employee information, and more. For these reasons and many more, it is important to address the possibility that this data can be compromised or accessed without permission. This usually occurs through third-party organizations or external people through what is called, “cyberattacks.” The increase in cyberattacks over the past few years increases this cause for concern and protection.
Keep reading to understand why businesses should be concerned about reviewing any existing cybersecurity and ensuring you have the best practices in place.
What is a Cyberattack and Cybersecurity?
The term “cyber” refers to systems and networks, usually in reference to computers but can also be used in reference to other technology. When a malicious action occurs on a piece of technology like a mobile phone, computer, laptop, or other device containing important business or personal information with the intention of stealth or fraud, this is called a cyberattack.
Cyberattacks can be many different things that occur to invade and disrupt the security of information contained in computer systems for the purpose of stealing data, committing fraud, and more. Thus, cybersecurity is the defense against these types of attacks. It involves implementing different security measures that work to stop these attacks before they can occur.
Protecting Your Business
There are many reasons why someone should keep processes and practices in place to protect the technology used in a business setting. The following are some examples of important information a business may want to protect from a cyberattack:
- Employee personal details (contact information, addresses, banking details)
- Business finances, transactions, credit cards, etc.
- Customer details, payments, personal information
- Hacking leading to shutting down entire systems
When a business has an unauthorized user access this type of information, it can be very detrimental to its productivity and continuing success.
Keeping employee data safe is critical to any business for so many reasons that may seem obvious but should be seriously considered when you have multiple computers accessing shared folders, drives, or networks that hold this important data. The potential for someone to access an employee’s address or credit card number is a big concern and can result in potential lawsuits.
The second item listed above to consider is the importance of keeping the business’ finances, payment details, and transactions secure and safe from external sources with cybersecurity. The last thing a growing business wants is an unauthorized user gaining access to a company’s financial information and using it to purchase goods. This type of information is usually stored in the office itself with HR personnel and the finance department.
Businesses that interact with customers and obtain personal information need good cybersecurity as well. For example, obtaining payment information over the phone for purchases that is entered into a system can be hacked by third parties.
An additional situation where cyberattacks can negatively impact your business is when they gain access to an entire system or network. These cyber attackers can shut down your network, block access to your own websites, and worse.
Making Clients Feel You are Trustworthy
If you step aside from thinking of personal reasons why cybersecurity is important to have in a business setting, you can see how the lack of this security can make a business appear in terms of liability and trustworthiness.
Think about when you type in your credit card details in a website, imagine hearing months later that the company was hacked and there is a possibility of your credit card details being compromised? You would never use that website again!
As a business, you want to be able to assure customers that their information is safe and secure against unauthorized access or complete loss. If a customer was to ask what types of policies and procedures are in place to secure shared information, it is vital to have concrete documentation or certifications that can put their minds at ease. A trustworthy business is one that people will return to and want to continue working with.
It gives a business a lot of notoriety and praise when they can share details of their cybersecurity practices outright.
How do I Increase My Business’ Cybersecurity?
After reading this article some may be asking questions regarding one of two things – how you can confirm the security of the technology your business is using, or how you can increase or enhance this security.
The first and possibly obvious answer would be to team up with a cybersecurity company that are experts in the field of IT to review your networks and tech systems for any so-called “red flags.” The process usually tells a business if there are areas that need improvement and suggestions on how to implement those improvements.
Train your staff on privacy and security best practices when it comes to keeping company data secure. This can be as simple as not sharing personal information through non-secure email networks, leaving computers open and logged in when working in public or at home, etc.
Another important factor in cybersecurity is the ability to reboot systems and possible lost data after a shutdown or cyberattack. This refers to situations where cyberattacks result in clearing out files, deleting data, etc.
In summary, the rise in cyberattacks on larger companies and the various types of client and employee data that is usually shared in a business setting, puts substantial importance on implementing good cybersecurity practices.
Cyberattacks can negatively impact the everyday productivity, future success, customer growth, reputation, finances, and the overall standing of a business. If external sources access bank details, customer addresses, financial statements, credit cards, or other personal details of both employees and clients, it can cause a substantial loss.
Business owners need to review their existing policies in place for data security and privacy within their office settings. Those that already have IT experts or a team in the business should check in on a constant basis to ensure any security practices stay up to date as well. Technology is everchanging and unfortunately cyber-attackers change their methods just as frequently.
These unfortunate situations can be avoided through things like staff training, following best practices on a regular basis, and teaming up with a trusted, high-rated cybersecurity company. As mentioned, there are even infrastructure/system tests available that can be run (usually by third-party cybersecurity companies) that will test for the levels of protection that exists or can be implemented across the business.