Considering the devastating effects that cybercrime can have on companies of all sizes and specialties, many businesses executives are looking for different cost-effective strategies they can leverage to protect sensitive information and ensure that cybercriminals are incapable of compromising and shutting down their IT network. However, the world of Information Technology is constantly shifting and evolving as new technologies and best practices come to the fore, making it difficult for many companies to assess which security investments will provide optimal protection, especially those without access to professional counsel from an IT managed services provider.
At Thriveon, we’re committed to unleashing your business success through top-quality IT support and counsel. That’s why small and medium-sized companies across Minnesota trust in us to keep their IT systems fully protected and operating at peak efficiency. We also understand how challenging it can be to determine the best IT security investments for your business when you’re so busy managing daily IT operations and putting out fires. Today, we’ll be taking a few minutes to discuss three simple steps your company can take to improve its cybersecurity systems, decreasing the likelihood and impact of system breaches in the process.
Step 1: Update and Refine Your Technical Security Measures
Technical security measures encompass a variety of core resources that protect your business from unwanted and malicious messages and files, including anti-virus programs, firewalls, spam filters and intrusion detection systems. Regrettably, cybercriminals are constantly developing new viruses and malware to worm their way into your company’s system to steal information or compromise your business processes. Technical security measures can help manage these threats by tracking the storage and use of your company’s sensitive data and creating powerful barriers that prevent cybercriminals from accessing your network through hacking or operating company devices connected to the internet.
Filters, firewalls and security programs are continuously being improved in response to the waves of malware and viruses that cybercriminals create, which is why it’s imperative to keep all of your current technical security measures updated. However, it’s important to note that the current security systems your company employs might not provide a sufficient level of protection for your business processes and assets. Committing some of your internal resources toward researching the latest and most effective technical security measures is a great way to pin down which ones your company should consider investing in. Partnering with an IT managed services provider like us is another great option if your internal team is too pressed for time or needs additional guidance.
Step 2: Utilize Employee Cybersecurity Training
Of course, technical security measures alone aren’t enough to shut down cybercrime. Even if you invest in state-of-the-art technical defenses, cybercriminals can still gain access to your network through your employees. In many cases, cybercriminals will disguise their malicious software as seemingly innocuous email attachments that they send out to multiple staff members. If your employees attempt to open or download one of these files, they gain complete access to your entire network, resulting in corrupted data, stolen assets and significant business downtime. That’s why many businesses provide employee cybersecurity training for their staff to ensure every member of their team is made aware of these veiled threats and prepped on how to effectively deal with them.
Over our years of assisting clients with employee cybersecurity training, we’ve found that making this initiative a part of your company’s onboarding process for new employees works best. However, it’s also essential to perform regular, focusing training sessions with all of your staff to ensure they stay updated on the latest cybersecurity threats and cybercriminal tactics, including your IT and management IT employees (cybercriminals will specifically target these individuals due to the wealth of business information they have access to). Establishing and communicating a concrete procedure in the event of a security breach is also critical.
Step 3: Create Backups and Recovery Systems
Unfortunately, no matter how comprehensive your security measures are, it’s essentially impossible to create an impenetrable defense for your business’s IT network. There are simply too many unknown threats being developed to assume that your company will be 100% safe from all of them. However, thanks to IT backups and recovery systems, you can guarantee that all of your company’s essential data, programs and other technology assets can be reclaimed in the event of a security breach. These final lines of defense will ensure that your business can recover and resume its operations even if everything on your current network is corrupted or lost.
Your business can use a host of different data storage mediums to recover its essential assets, including solid-state storage, remote backup services, magnetic tape and hard disks. Each brings a number of potential advantages to the table, so be sure to check in with your internal IT team for guidance if needed. Partnering with an IT managed services provider is another great way to pin down which specific backups and recovery systems will work best with your company’s current IT framework.
Is Your Company’s IT Network Safe Now?
Almost every managed IT provider you meet with will discuss the basic security measures we’ve listed above and offer to implement them into your current IT system, claiming that these tools are the best defenses your business can bring to bear against cybercrime. And that’s exactly why these providers aren't equipped to protect your company. After all, it takes more than a series of reactive systems to keep your business safe from cybercrime. Here at Thriveon, we combine IT strategy with a proactive, process-driven approach to identify and manage cybersecurity threats before they get the chance to affect your system and slow down your employees. In fact, our Proven Process is so effective that we’ve prevented 100% of ransomware and network breach attempts for our clients this year.
If you’re interested in cutting straight to achieving better security and overall IT results for your business, then shoot us a call to schedule a 30-minute discovery meeting with Thriveon. We’d be more than happy to help you understand where your company stands in terms of cybersecurity and how it can improve. Also, if you want to learn more about how to improve your company’s cybersecurity through employee training, then be sure to check out our free e-book, Cybersecurity Guidelines for Secure Behavior Online and in the Office. We designed this guide to teach you more about how employee security awareness can help your business secure its data and intellectual property from a variety of potential threats.