Essential Online Security Tips for Small Businesses
The key to secure online surfing, trading and transactions is to not be ignorant of current affairs, trends, technology and knowledge. Take a car for example. You learn how to drive it (gas pedal down, hold onto the wheel and brace yourself) and away you go, but do you also learn what the road markings and the rules of the road are? Or you do simply drive and try to keep on the big flat grey thing? If you are going to trade and transact online, then you need to know about the Internet, in the same way that you need to know about the road if you drive a car.
Your business is the car
If you are a business (especially a small one), you have an advantage when you are online. Your business is the car. In real life you may not know what makes a real car move–it could be powered by a hamster in a wheel. But, when you trade online, your business is the car. You know its inner working; you know its strengths, weaknesses and what it can do.
My business is the car…..so what?
The online world is now more complex than ever, which means that you can do much more online than ever before. You know your business intimately, which means you can ply your trade in a number of ways, whilst being safe in the knowledge that your company can handle it. For example your company has a great accounting department and two people in the marketing department are prolific graphic designers.
So why not create a highly visual interactive interface, which allows people to see highly graphic 3D models of your products. Why not have a section of your website that allows people to manage their finances based upon the accounting algorithms that were pioneered by your accountancy department. Your small business is small and flexible enough so that you may try hundreds of things online without losing too many customers or credibility.
What does this have to do with online security?
Your car can be modified to handle the road better. Your online security can be modified to be more secure in the same way, but you are a small and flexible company, so you can alter, adjust and tweak your security hourly if you wish, and your web users, affiliates, host or partners are not going to complain. You can overhaul your security weekly because you are small, maneuverable and flexible enough to do so.
Learn more about online security
The best tip you will ever receive is to learn about online security and keep up to date with current theories and updates.
Security analysis to find all of the chinks in your security armor
Sometimes it will take the work of a trusted professional to fully test your network, connections and hardware in order to find security weaknesses. It is a good idea to use the services of two or more security analysis professionals, just in-case one of them does not do a good job or in-case one of them over-inflates the amount of work needed in order to gain more work.
Your software, connections and cables need to be checked in your office. You need to be sure that a traitorous employee has not tampered with any hardware or connections in order to gain access to your secrets. They may be broadcasting an Internet signal, which is packed with your company information.
Any devices or software that is used via remote access should be checked and secured because they have portals through which a hacker can sneak onto your system.
Your server host should update and secure the server on a regular basis. There should be no possibility of your information falling into the wrong hands via direct or remote access to your host. If you use a dedicated server then it is up to you to make sure it is secure and updated.
Some staff will try to hack your systems in order to gain access. They can use your internal network to do this and then fake as if the attack came from the Internet. They may also add additional hardware to your computer systems in order to break into them or steal information from them.
You need an adequate software and hardware defense against them.
Again, you need a good system for checking and removing them–probably involving some form of software.
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