Safeguarding Your Business’s All-Important Tech
Over the past few decades, the success of business has, more often than not, been inextricably linked to how well it can use the tech at its disposal. Even something as simple as a few computers can carry all the tools and data you need to get the very best services and products out to the customer, as well as organizing your resources to their most efficient use possible. To that end, the threats to the tech tools you rely on need to be taken seriously.
Teach your team
What the tools we give you further in these points, your protections are only going to be as effective as your team is. Any member of your team can leave your business vulnerable to unauthorized access. This is why you need to make sure that you teach different levels of computer safety to the team. This includes password policy, ensuring that their password isn’t either too easy to guess or that it’s not easily found because they leave it written down. You need to also teach them about the sites they use while using business tech, ensuring they’re not taking your network into dangerous territory. Regular training on different threats is a must.
Equip your digital armor
Providing that your team isn’t making the network more vulnerable, you need to give it the armor that will protect it from the vast majority of cyber threats. Most of these will come in the form of malware. Malware can be just annoying, but it can also be dangerous, accessing and deleting, changing or sharing files it shouldn’t. It can also eat up both the bandwidth of the network as well as the processing power of any device. The right measures, such as firewalls, antiviruses, and anti-spyware software should be installed on every device in the office, without exception.
Keep the hackers out
Firewalls and anti-malware software aren’t enough to keep out hackers. In fact, if a hacker really wants to get into your system, they will work hard to find those vulnerabilities. Encrypting your essential data is important in making sure that even if they do access is, they can’t do as much damage as they potentially could. You can make your network hard enough that most hackers aren’t going to keep trying, as well. You can do this using ethical hackers. Like regular hackers, they will find and exploit the vulnerabilities in your business’s network. However, they report those vulnerabilities back to your IT team, allowing you to plug up those gaps and make your network as iron-clad as it can possibly be.
To Cloud or not to Cloud
Backing up your business’s data is important. As it making sure that you have an accessible host for your online content. But there is a danger in making the Cloud a permanent home for your data. For one, you have no say in how well-secured any data on the Cloud is, so perhaps the most sensitive stuff shouldn’t be kept there. Cloud services can go down, too. Only recently, Amazon’s S3 cloud service went down. It didn’t last long, but it made huge disruptions to all sorts of companies and sites across the world. You need a diversity of backup options. The Cloud can be a temporary tool to help you do that, but it shouldn’t be the only thing you rely on.
The software supply
Besides your devices and your data, what about the software that your business uses? In most cases, big company software, like Microsoft’s Office, aren’t going to offer you major problems. But many industries have a need for specialist software. Sometimes, the company providing that software is no longer able to keep providing their services. For those risks, you need to consider alternative software or even safeguards like source code escrow. This means that companies can share their software source code with your business if they’re no longer able to support their own software. That source code allows your IT team, or software as a service outsourced teams to keep updating and improving the software. Otherwise, those tools you rely on might eventually lose compatibility with your tech.
Keep people in the loop
Communication is one of the most important things about the tech that we have today. It allows people who are on the road and even in other countries keep working alongside one another and stay informed of the changes in the business. To that end, you need to make sure that people are always able to keep those lines of communication open. That’s one of the reasons a business should think about providing package data plans for their employees’ mobile devices. Don’t leave it up to employees who might not be able to afford the plans that keep their tech connected no matter where they are.
Naturally, you can’t forget that the actual tech devices themselves are just as important a part of keeping the business reliable. But too many business owners do and wonder why their business’s productivity is slowing down. A thorough maintenance strategy is essential. This includes things like cleaning the surrounding area and using compressed air to clear out fans for the devices. But it also means looking at the software and files on the computer and giving it the occasional audit, getting rid of excess data. You should be making weekly checks for drivers and software updates, too. Manufacturers and developers are always looking at ways they can optimize what they provide. Fail to take that into account and you could be missing an immediate speed boost for your tech.
Fail to take your tech and the protection of that tech seriously and you’re going to run into barriers to your business more often than you would like. You’ll lose time, tools, and precious data. Even worse, your business can be accessed by those who will use that data to do a lot of harm to you, financially and legally. The tips above will hopefully keep you protected from them and all the other threats facing your tech.