How to Keep Hackers at Bay with Simple Security Habits

By October 19, 2017 Articles

The fact that many organizations are inadequately prepared for a data breach is made clear every time a major cybersecurity attack hits the headlines. Still, despite the constant warnings and rapidly evolving threat landscape, a lot of companies are still failing to take matters seriously.

One of the most common problems is that they take their technological countermeasures for granted without recognizing that, in fact, the single biggest threat comes from within – employees. That’s why you need to train your team to become a human firewall, rather than the weakest link in your security strategy.

Mobile Device Security

Less than 10 years ago, mobile malware barely even registered as an emerging threat. Today, however, almost everyone has a smartphone and many businesses have also become heavily reliant on mobile technology. It’s this ubiquity, combined with the fact that they’re notorious for getting lost or stolen, that makes smartphones a favorite target for hackers.

Although Google and Apple have made great progress to make their operating systems more secure and robust, there’s no substitute for enforcing a strict mobile device policy that instills a culture of accountability among your team and educates them on the best habits to get into.

While antivirus solutions have become every bit as important on mobile devices as they are on desktop machines, the primary risk with mobile phones lies with them ending up in the wrong hands. That’s why security-conscious smartphone users always lock their devices behind a PIN code whenever they’re not using them.

Another good mobile security habit is to avoid connecting to unsecured wireless networks, which are notoriously open to man-in-the-middle attacks. Instead, users should always connect through the company VPN to ensure that all traffic is encrypted during transport between the device and the local router.

Phishing Scams

Today, the majority of cyberattacks start with a social engineering scam whereby criminals try to earn the trust of their victims and dupe them into clicking on malicious links, downloading malicious software, or even unwittingly giving away confidential information directly.

Unfortunately, due to the very human element of phishing scams, it is sometimes notoriously difficult for technical solutions like antivirus software and spam filters to identify the threats. That’s why every member of your team should be equipped with the knowledge necessary to recognize suspicious emails, SMSs and phone calls.

A security-conscious employee will always think before clicking links in an email by moving the cursor over them to see where they actually lead. Also, they won’t download any attachments — let alone open them — unless they come from a known source and were expected.

A security-conscious workplace also holds a culture of accountability whereby employees know whom to report to as soon as a suspicious activity occurs. After all, cybersecurity isn’t just something that management and IT departments need to think about; it should be a team effort involving everyone in your organization.

Social Media

Social media has become one of the most important digital marketing channels in the world of modern business, but did you know that it also presents one of the biggest cybersecurity risks?

Not only do poor security habits make social media a land of opportunity for criminals seeking easy targets – it’s also a platform that can make or break a company’s reputation. That’s why employees should always be mindful of what they post on social networks, since everything they write on your company profiles, or about your company on their own profiles, has the potential to impact your brand’s image enormously.

Here at Truewater, we understand that great security isn’t just about implementing the right technological solutions. It’s also about having the right people looking after your resources. That’s why we offer hosted solutions to make sure that your data is always in the safest hands. Contact us today to speak to one of our IT professionals.

Truewater

Truewater

Truewater was established in 2001 with the vision of bringing enterprise class IT support to small and medium sized businesses.