The Internet allows businesses of all sizes and from any location to reach new and larger markets and provides opportunities to work more efficiently by using computer-based tools. However, with all the benefits come cyber risks.
The Dangerous Reality of Cyber Crime
Theft of digital information has become the most commonly reported fraud, even surpassing physical theft. Every business that uses the Internet is responsible for creating a culture of security that will enhance business and consumer confidence.
Many small businesses don’t allocate the budget for risk mitigation or cyber liability insurance because they feel they do not store any data that would be at risk. Yet many small businesses actually do store pieces of customer information that are of significant value to cybercriminals. Do you store any email addresses, phone numbers, or billing addresses? Consider all of your sensitive information. As cybercriminals continue to target small businesses, owners and employees must protect both their customers and themselves.
Cyber Security Tips
Implement a cybersecurity strategy to protect the business, the customers, and data from growing cybersecurity threats.
- Protect information and networks. Keep machines clean with the latest security software, web browser, and operating system to defend against viruses, malware, and other threats. Set antivirus software to run a scan after each update.
- Provide firewall security. A firewall is a set of related programs that prevent outsiders from accessing data on a private network. Make sure the operating system’s firewall is enabled or install free firewall software.
- Make backup copies of important information. Regularly back up the data on all computers. Critical data includes word processing documents, electronic spreadsheets, databases, financial files, human resources files, and accounts receivable/payable files.
- Control physical computer assess and create user accounts. Prevent access to business computers by unauthorized individuals. Laptops can be particularly easy targets for theft or can be lost, so lock them up when unattended. Create separate user accounts for each employee.
- Secure Wi-Fi networks. Make sure your Wi-fi network is secure, encrypted, and hidden. Set up your wireless access point or router, so it does not broadcast the network name.
- Employ best practices on payment cards. Collaborate with banks or processors to ensure trusted tools and anti-fraud services are being used. Isolate payment systems from other, less secure programs and don’t use the same computer to process payments and surf the Internet.
- Limit employee access to data and information. Never provide employees with access to all data systems. Employees should only be given access to the data systems that they need for their specific jobs, and should not be able to install any software without permission.
- Don’t forget passwords and authentication. Require employees to use unique passwords and change passwords every three months. Requiring additional information beyond a password to gain entry adds another layer of security.
Even with preventive measures in place, cyber attacks and cyber theft are true threats. Speak to an agent about cyber liability insurance today.
About Arroyo Insurance Services
Arroyo Insurance Services was officially established in 1986, but we have roots dating back to before 1950. One of California’s leading client-oriented and independently owned agencies, we have over 140 employees with a combined experience of over 450 years, spread across 11 locations. We are committed to providing the best insurance and risk management services at the most competitive premiums, and backing it with hands-on service tailored to our customers’ needs. For more information on how we can mitigate your risks, contact us today at (877) 220-4769.