Smartphones, laptops, and tablets, have boosted efficiency and communication from the field to the office and back, but they also open your business up to cyberattacks.
A recent survey reported by the Associated Press finds that small-to-medium-sized businesses — like many remodeling companies — are increasingly the targets of such attacks.
Every organization is vulnerable, but most smaller businesses don’t have the resources to take the proper security measures for their data and devices. There’s a lack of dedicated IT departments and not enough room in the operating budget, survey respondents said.
Most cyberattacks take the form of phishing or social engineering scams, targeting computer, smartphone, or tablet users through email links and attachments. Once a link or attachment is clicked, malware is downloaded on the device, and may spread to other systems.
But you can add layers of security for you, your business, and your team.
How to Protect Yourself
The Small Business Administration has the following tips to help protect you, your devices, and your data:
- Protect against spyware, viruses and malware by installing anti-virus and anti-spyware on company computers.
- Secure your networks behind a firewall with encryption.
- Establish policies for employees regarding handling sensitive client information.
- Educate your team about cyber-attacks and hold them accountable for security.
- Require strong passwords on all devices and cloud-based services — and change them regularly.
- Employ best practices on banking and payments.
- Backup business data regularly
- Control all employee devices to prevent theft — a stolen phone, tablet or laptop could be the easiest way to breach your business data.
- Create a mobile device security plan to ensure all employees have updated password protections, encryption, and security apps on all devices.
- Protect all the pages on your public-facing website, not just the contact pages.
For more detailed information from the SBA, start with its cybersecurity overview. The Federal Trade Commission also has resources to help: Cybersecurity for Small Businesses.
More on this on PowerTips TV
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