Did you know that organisations and businesses can claim GDPR compensation for distress.
There’s no better time to raise awareness over the risks poor cybersecurity involves than now.
The number of cyberattacks has increased in the last couple of years, and these are projected to cost $10.5 trillion yearly by 2025. So, there’s no doubt – no business is invulnerable. The problem intensifies as numerous companies still make mistakes regarding their online privacy, ignoring threats just lurking to capture a moment of weakness. Not only money is at stake when these cybercrimes happen but also psychological health, so if you’re running a business, ensure you’re mindful of protecting it adequately.
Here are some of the most common mistakes to avoid in this sense and solutions to them.
Not adequately training employees
It’s entrepreneurs’ obligation to empower their employees to use online tools safely. Training is a must in every organisation, whether it’s education on common cyber threats or healthy online safety habits. In 2021, human error was the most prominent cybersecurity threat to businesses, meaning that companies fell victim to a cyberattack due to someone’s negligence. Employees most probably released information unconsciously, but this is exactly the problem – problems could have been avoided if a robust training programme had existed. At the time being, there are still many businesses that keep ignoring this problem exposing themselves to data breaches, malware, spyware, phishing, or other cyberattacks.
If you run a company whose purpose is to thrive, you must take employee training very seriously. Consider educating labourers on issues that could be lurking, such as phishing. This type of online threat is quite common these days, as it’s one of the most viable solutions for hackers to get their hands on sensitive data and do so smoothly. After all, it’s the very recipient of the compromising email or message who clicks on that suspicious link or releases private information. That being said, employees should be encouraged not to click on such malicious links and also not download files from an untrusted web page (malware). You should also explain the distinction between a strong and poor password to your team and introduce them to the art of creating hard-to-crack passcodes.
Not backing up data
One of the most fruitful measures you can adopt to protect company data is undoubtedly backing up. As simple as it is, this practice is crucial for keeping your corporation safe and sound, even in the case of loss or theft. While it’s true that data management solutions today are more advanced than ever, it’s all in vain if these aren’t complemented by backups. These backups are crucial because they keep a clean copy of your files and data and allow you to restore them in the case of an emergency. This is valid not only for online cyber threats but also for natural hazards that might destroy the devices on which you store corporate data.
This is something that many companies tend to disregard time and again, be it because they’re not familiar with the data that fall under GDPR or simply because they think it’s not going to happen to them. The reality is that cyberattacks are on the rise and can impact any business, regardless of its type and size. Therefore, ensure you inform yourself about the type of assets that need security and whether certain regulations and laws, such as GDPR, apply to your company. In case of the unthinkable, you can claim GDPR compensation for distress or financial loss. Remember that a data breach can affect victims not only materially but also psychologically, and in the case of the latter, solutions are possible, too, so don’t ignore the problem in the hope it will solve itself.
Ignoring regular software updates
Let’s face it – you’ve delayed that software update prompt at least once. And while it’s understandable to do so if you have an urgent deadline or are about to go into an important meeting, it’s not recommended to keep doing that. Regular software updates can greatly benefit your business, as they address computer bugs, common threats, and security vulnerabilities and emphasise user experience. That being said, they prevent malicious actors from exploiting potential weak entry points and strengthen your firewall. This is one of the simplest ways to be one step ahead of hackers, and the best part? It often costs you nothing if you’re subscribed to top-notch security software.
Relying on poor passwords
Weak passwords can put your company at considerable risk, but this should come as no surprise. The first thing hackers would try their luck on is undoubtedly your account or system’s password. Therefore, try to establish a strong password policy and build passcodes that are hard to guess and hard to crack. Some aspects that you should pay heed to in this regard include:
- Avoid passwords which contain your organisation’s name or year of funding, as well as things relevant to you.
- Build long passcodes of at least ten characters and mix them all up – make use of everything from upper- and lowercase letters to special characters and numbers.
- Don’t recycle your password! That means you shouldn’t use the same password for different accounts. If one is compromised, the same will happen with the other.
- Stay away from keyboard patterns of the sort ‘1234’.
- Leverage Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) – this will let you control access to your account and always be up to date with any attempt of uninvited login.
Handling over the reins to a single IT individual
Managing cybersecurity alone or assigning a single individual to be responsible for the IT network isn’t the wisest decision, given the number of threats out there and the advanced technologies used to compromise one’s system. Even if you’re a trained expert in the field, taking care of technical things yourself is not advisable. Instead, collaborate with several IT professionals and constantly check on their progress. Handling over the reins to a single individual might give them an open invitation to exploit the weak entry points into your system.
Online privacy is a serious business which requires robust practices and seriousness, but with measures of the likes discussed above, it’s achievable.