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Cyber Risk: Employee Awareness and Best Practices

In today’s cyber-connected world, your company needs to be vigilant to manage the risk your employees can present to your business. With corporate processes being more connected than ever and with the millions of Americans online each day for work and commerce, there is an ever-present risk to your organization. Nonetheless, this way of operating is commonplace in 2018 so it’s important for you and your company to be proactive in your cybersecurity practices.

Similar to having a plan to protect your actual business location from things like physical break ins and theft, you must also have a blueprint to protect your digital assets and company information. You might see it as a burden but it’s an essential practice and no longer can we afford to cut back on ways to protect our mission critical data.

Now, with any good defense strategy you have to cover all the bases. Things like network security, offsite storage, and encrypted cloud backups are all pieces of the puzzle but the most overlooked component is often the people that work within the organization itself, our employees. They’re the individuals that are safeguarding passwords, the ones checking email within sensitive networks, and the ones discussing private corporate information, sometimes with prying eyes and ears nearby. With all these potential threats, it’s essential to have a set of basic principles that govern your employees’ security posture as they work hard for you each day. Here are a few best practices to get you started.

  • Control access to sensitive information. Ensure your company has access controls in place to grant permissions to the right people and the appropriate systems. For example, keep online disks and systems that handle legal docs separate and inaccessible from the phone support team.
  • Practice good password hygiene. At a minimum have proven standards in place and use the highest recommended security protocols for password management.
  • Instill a policy of awareness within your company that gives them the ability to speak up and report suspicious behavior anonymously or without fear of repercussion. Some cyber breaches are noticed early and never reported.
  • Training is mandatory. Companies like Inspired eLearning have advanced security programs and certifications for companies big and small.
  • Put pen to paper and develop a security policy. Your business should have a written and signed computer use policy that details how company assets can be used and what can be installed on machines linked to company data.
  • Backup your data every day and, yes, that means workstations, servers, and company emails. Jungle Disk offers encrypted offsite backup and email archiving. Have these set up internally and make sure your staff is proficient with these tools and the value they offer.
  • Keep up with the latest information from government entities like the FBI on what is happening in the cyber world and ways you can stay safe and report incidents.

Now that you have the fundamentals you can start putting together a plan of action that will keep your employees from putting your business at risk. For help putting together a data security strategy, contact our solution consultants by calling (888) 601-0401. Good luck!

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