How to Avoid Threats to Online Business

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Marcela Dias of webprofits

In this article we take a look at some of the common ways a business and its online security is compromised. Solutions such as managed and dedicated secure servers, and professional business software packages are suggested to overcome these issues. If you don’t know if you are definitely secure, then you know you need help.

There are a number of issues related to security and having your business online. The fact is you cannot afford, not to have your business online because business software and your own managed and dedicated servers are key to streamlining your processes. Here we look at some of the attacks that often happen to small and medium businesses and how to avoid them. It is important to educate your people on these common threats and take the necessary measures.

• Lost and Stolen Laptops. This can be a huge problem for you business. Not only will you lose all of your information on the laptop, you might give the thief access to all of your accounts and a lot of personal information. The best way to avoid this is with password protection on the laptop. This still does not mean they cannot get the information off the hard drive, and there are also encryption options on both Mac and PC that allow everything on your computers to be extremely difficult to dig up. The easiest solution is to have managed and dedicated off site servers, and never have any information on your computers in the first place. Your computers and laptops are only access terminals to your company’s business software and information.

• Spear Phishing. Phishing is a when someone sends you an email, or a website asks you for important information. For example, someone in your company may get an email from what looks like a government department asking for information. Information thieves are posing as someone you may trust to get your information. Spear Phishing is a highly targeted form of this activity. For example, someone may pretend to be someone in your company emailing someone else in your company. The only way to avoid this is to set rules about information sharing. No one should ever respond to anyone with information on the company or access to accounts. If everyone knows that you would never share this kind of information, then they know when these attacks will happen.

• Unhappy Employee. An unhappy employee can be more troublesome than the most sophisticated hacker attacks. The only way to manage this situation is to separate tasks and only allow specific access to specific people. You need a way to know who it was if information is ever leaked.

• Viral Threat. While being online is an absolute necessity, being protected is even more essential. The best managed server providers will have a number of defenses against this, and your business software supplier should also have security measures as a part of your package.

• Wireless. Not too many of us are aware of how dangerous wireless technology can be. Your own network needs to be encrypted, and you also need to take extra measures when your people are out of the office. Speak to your business management software supplier for communication solutions as a part of your business package. Your people cannot be chatting on MSN or Yahoo about important issues. You will need your own applications that are to be used when communicating internally.

If you don’t understand how these issues work, and if you are not sure if your company is secure, then you know you need professional help. These are only a few examples of security threats that can damage your business. Hopefully, they have highlighted the need for you to invest in professional and technical help.

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