4 Things You Must Do To Protect Your Business From Cyber Attacks

by Jones David

There used to be a time when cyberattacks were a headache only for big businesses. But now, small businesses are also falling victim. Now the question to ask is, what can you realistically do to protect yourself from cyber-attacks and boost your digital security, especially if you are a small business? The answer is — a lot.

Here are four basic steps you can take to ensure your business remains more secure and your customer’s sensitive information stays protected from cybercriminals to get you started.

1. Protect Your Network Using a Firewall

When a hacker tries to insert malware into your payment terminal, a robust firewall acts as the first line of defence against it. Without it, malware can be used to steal data from your terminal, including valuable customer information such as personal info and credit or debit card details from any part of the world. With a firewall gatekeeping your systems, any time a huge amount of data is being implanted into or extracted from your network, you can get notified and make it so that the process is entirely terminated.

2. Set Up Your Payment Terminal on a Different Network

Keeping your store and payment terminals separate is good practice if you want to decrease your chance of falling prey to a cyberattack greatly. There have been many instances of hackers getting access to your network using the credentials of someone within an organization. They do so by hacking into an employee’s computer through a phishing email and then using that entry point to access your entire network. But hackers will most likely give up if you separate your terminals and use only a couple of trusted individuals with proper authorization to maintain the payment systems. Why? Because this means employing more complicated methods to breach your system, which many hackers are simply not willing to do.

3. Regularly Change Usernames and Passwords on all Access Points

Make sure you change all the default passwords on your network right off the bat. Usernames like ‘admin’ with passwords set as ‘123456’ are all too common and most likely known to all self-respecting hackers. Changing them is a must. Also, to ensure that usernames and passwords on all network access points are changed regularly, set a calendar reminder. Changing passwords every 80-90 days is a safe bet.

4. Secure Your URL

If you’re running a business where your customers regularly have to send secure information through your network, you should be using HTTPS and not HTTP. HTTPS prevents interceptions and interruptions from occurring while the content is in transit.

Another necessary site protocol is SSL (Secure Sockets Layer). This transfers visitors’ personal information between the website and your database. An SSL encrypts information to prevent it from others reading it while in transit. Set up an SSL certificate manager to ensure that those without authorization cannot decrypt customer data while it’s in transit.

Protect Customer Data

Protecting customer data should be at the top of your priority list when running a business where such information is regularly passing through the network. Any breach you suffer could potentially be catastrophic for your business, so why risk it?

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