One of the worst fears of most businesses is experiencing a data breach. This can cause chaos in so many different ways as well as negatively affect your brand. For this reason, doing everything possible to prevent one from happening should be a top priority. However, seeing as the internet has very little regulation and there are so many people browsing online by the second, how then do you protect your business and customers? The answer is that you do all that you can to safeguard your website and data. If you continue reading, you’re going to find a few effective ways that you can avoid a data breach.

Review Your Security Measures

One of the first places to start if you want to avoid a data breach is to review your security measures. Take a look at the ones you have in place so far and assess their effectiveness. You can then proceed to look for ways to update and improve them. Here are a few in particular that you may want to pay attention to.

  • Two-step authentication – If you want to mitigate the chances of a data breach in your business, you should make sure you include two-step authentication in your security measures. This is a way to add another layer of security and make it harder for outsiders to penetrate your platforms.
  • Surveillance – In addition to authentication, if you happen to have server rooms, surveillance could go a long way in creating the level of security that you need. There are other advantages of having surveillance in the workplace such as loss prevention and improved employee performance as well.
  • Passwords – Passwords are often used to help protect sensitive information. However, if they’re too easy or multiple people have access to them, then it may entirely defeat the purpose. When choosing a password, try not to reuse similar ones as then hackers are more likely to be able to guess them. Instead, ensure passwords are long and hard to guess. Another tip is to try and avoid brands, sports teams, and combinations of letters, numbers or symbols that are adjacent to one another.

Separate Accounts

A lot of the time, it’s easy to blur the lines between personal and business accounts, but this is something you and staff should avoid. This is because if one account is hacked, which has information that shouldn’t be there, it could lead to issues such as identity theft or stolen data. If you feel any of your accounts have been compromised or are experiencing a data breach, you should get in touch with Secure Forensics as they often help with data breaches and can run a private investigation.

Train Your Employees

You should never assume that your employees know what to do and what security measure to take to prevent data breaches. This is where training comes into play as it’s an opportunity to teach them how to be safe when accessing sensitive data. You can offer training on a regular basis and monitor to make sure all regulations are adequately being followed. Here are a few ways to do it.

  • Training exercises – One of the ways that you can train your employees is by “live fire” training which is where employees go through a simulated attack specific to their job. They can then go on to talk about the lessons they learned, and hopefully, keep these lessons in mind on a daily basis.
  • Communicate – Cybersecurity is constantly changing and is certainly more advanced now than it once was. Find a way to communicate information regarding cybersecurity practices with your staff so that they’re up-to-date.
  • Appoint advocates – When employees become wrapped up in work, it’s easy to forget the cybersecurity practices they should use. You should, therefore, try and appoint advocates who are capable of motivating staff and reminding them about security practices on a regular basis.

Use FINRA Checklist

There are so many resources as well as organizations our there to help with cybersecurity and one is the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). You should make a habit of checking their website regularly to see what advice they have on cybersecurity that you can implement in your business. For instance, they advise planning for a breach rather than focusing solely on prevention which could help you close any loose ends or blind spots when it comes to cybersecurity. For the most part, you’ll find a definitive checklist on cybersecurity which you may find useful.

Restrict Access

It shouldn’t surprise you to know that often, data breaches are something that happens from the inside. In light of this, try to enforce restrictive data permissions on your organization. You can achieve this by making sure that employees only have access to information that they actually need or that relates to their job. Doing so can help reduce the likelihood of data breaches occurring.

Understand Your Risk Profile

Every company has a different level of risk, so you should make sure that you understand yours. Knowing how much risk you’re in can unveil your level of vulnerability and ensure that you try and mitigate those risks one by one. When trying to prevent a data breach, base your protections as well as recommendations on the value proposition of the company. Once you do this, you should have a clear goal for security and hopefully, implement more effective practices as well.

Have a Breach Response Plan

Although you put measures in place to prevent data breaches, you should have a plan in case one happens. Knowing how you’ll respond to one could also help your team be more vigilant and prepared for the eventuality of one.

As long as you’re active on the internet, there will always be a risk of data breaches as all activities can’t be monitored at once. However, you can do your best to make sure that they don’t happen to you by equipping yourself with knowledge and staying up-to-date with cybersecurity trends. The last thing you want is for the work you’ve put into building your business to be destroyed due to preventable mistakes.

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