Cybercrime is one of the most significant threats to US businesses. According to Forbes, the global cost of cybercrime is expected to exceed $6 trillion by 2021. As a business owner, it’s crucial to be aware of the risks of cyber attacks and to take steps to protect your company.
One of the best ways to shield your business is to be proactive in keeping your employees safe. In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at some effective strategies you can employ today.
How to Keep Your Employees Safe
There are a number of steps business owners can take to try and lower the risk of security breaches and cyber attacks. One of the most effective methods is to enforce measures to keep employees safe while they’re at work or working remotely. Examples of effective strategies include:
Recognize Phishing Emails
The vast majority of people will be familiar with opening their inbox or junk folder to find messages from suspicious looking senders. Phishing emails are used by cyber criminals to try and lure recipients into providing data and they are often highly sophisticated.
In many cases, phishing scams look very professional, and this is why people can fall into the trap of replying, clicking on links or giving away sensitive information. Teaching employees to recognize phishing emails is an excellent idea, especially when you look at the statistics.
Approximately 3.4 billion fake emails are sent around the world each day, and it is estimated that phishing scams account for around 4% of all emails. Since 2016, there has been a 280% increase in the number of phishing emails. Spotting the signs and learning to detect red flags can help to protect your business. Common signs to look out for include:
- Generic subject titles, for example, ‘dear customer’ or ‘valued member’
- Requests for sensitive or confidential data: reputable companies and organizations like banks will never ask a customer to send information via email or by clicking on a link
- Domain name: always check the address or domain name the email has come from
- Spelling mistakes and using the wrong logo
Provide Cybersecurity Training
Cybersecurity should be a priority for all business owners operating in the 21st century. Many people assume that big businesses are targets, but this simply isn’t the case. Over 40% of attacks involve small companies.
Providing cybersecurity training for employees can help you make your defenses more robust and enable staff members to detect potential threats. Using a managed service provider offers a range of benefits for businesses of all sizes.
As well as providing advice to improve operations and boost productivity and lower costs, managed service providers can also oversee training for employees and strengthen security measures. IT experts are aware of the risks and they use their knowledge and experience to educate others about how to spot potential problems and respond to them.
Strengthen Privacy Policies
Every business should have policies and protocols in place to minimize the risk of cyber attacks and security breaches. It is particularly important to have clear advice and guidelines if you have a BYOD (bring your own device) policy or you have teams that work remotely.
By setting out instructions that provide information about how and when devices can be accessed and used and how data is stored, you can lower the risk of employees tapping into unsecured systems and exposing sensitive data.
Employees should have access to secure, password-protected systems and programs, and training should be updated regularly. Using cloud systems and solutions like multi-factor authentication and VPNs can help you create a robust defense.
It’s wise to speak to employees on a regular basis to ensure that they are aware of any changes or updates to systems or guidelines, and that everyone is familiar with the steps they should be taking when working in the office, at home or on the move.
A managed service provider can help you draw up and implement policies, oversee training, and ensure all your systems and networks are watertight.
Cybercrime is a real threat to businesses and organizations of all scales across all industries. Taking steps to protect your employees plays a vital role in keeping your business safe. If you’re looking for ways to shield your company, it’s an excellent idea to be proactive in providing cybersecurity training and teaching employees to recognize phishing emails.
It is also crucial to ensure you have robust measures and policies in place to strengthen security and reduce the risk of downtime caused by cyber attacks and unexpected breaches.