Protect Your Business Data by Training Your Staff3 November 2014
But with so many spam emails being automatically spotted and marked as dangerous, it’s easy to let your guard down when a malicious message slips through the net, dropping into your inbox and looking, at first glance, genuine.
You, and your staff, can’t rely solely on email systems and anti-virus programs to protect you from criminal attacks. That’s why it’s essential to train your employees in how to spot potential threats, because their judgement could be your last line of defence against falling victim to cyber crime.
Criminals know that it’s easier to trick people than to trick computers. Which is why it’s important to make your staff aware of the potential threats. Here’s what they should know:
The importance of their role in digital security and the value to them of helping to keep the firm protected. A successful attack could cost the business thousands, in lost time, lost sales and the resources employed to fix the problem.
Never click on a link in an email or social media post without being absolutely confident that it’s genuine. Particularly if the email has anything to do with finance.
Watch out for spear phishing attacks. These try very hard to look genuine because the criminals have researched their target. The email or social post is addressed to a named individual and may use the name of genuine customers or suppliers. Advanced spear phishing can also include telephone calls, in a bid to make the email seem even more plausible.
Be careful about USB sticks and disks. Viruses, many of which will try to steal your passwords, are often transferred on USB memory sticks or even CDs. Take care what you put into your computer.
Confidential data must be protected. This includes customer and supplier information. Care must be taken when transferring files containing confidential data, which should not go outside your firm’s secure digital environment.
Always keep antivirus programs up to date, on computers, smartphones and tablets. Alternatively, use a system that keeps all your devices up to date automatically.
What to do if a cyber attack is suspected or occurs. Staff are to be encouraged to report potential attacks that they’re aware of. More importantly, if they think an attack has worked, they should report it immediately. While they might want to keep quiet, out of embarrassment or even fear for their job, they should be encouraged to speak up quickly so that the damage can be minimised.
How to get the message across when training staff
The threat to firms is growing, as cyber criminals realise that digital crime is less risky and potentially more rewarding that old-fashioned theft and fraud.
Here are some suggestions for how to keep your staff informed of the real risks of cyber crime:
Whether your business has five employees or five hundred, each one is a potential weak link in your digital security. Investing time in training them about the risks from cyber crime will help protect your business against potentially disruptive and expensive attacks.
How we can help you with cyber security
We help smaller businesses across the south of England to implement and manage their digital security. Our solutions include:
If you want to improve the cyber security in your business, we’d be pleased to have a no-obligation conversation about the potential solutions. Call us now on 08450 510600 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Prevention is better than cure when it comes to data security, so get in touch with us today.