Whether your data is stored on a local machine, a corporate network or a cloud platform, keeping that information secure should be the top priority of every organization. This list will focus primarily on security precautions for end-user machines and their data, as well as how to protect against external threats at the perimeter. If you’re not already familiar with some of these threats, it’s time to get up to speed.
As technology continues to advance at a rapid pace, hackers have new tools and techniques that allow them to sidestep traditional security measures. In some ways, this arms race can be compared to the Cold War era when each side was trying to develop ever-more powerful weapons. Much of the time, the bad guys will find a way in. In fact, 95% of attacks are not even noticed by their victims. That means you need to keep your defenses up.
If you’re an IT pro, it’s likely that you spend a considerable amount of time thinking about how to prevent or stop potential security breaches from happening in the first place. However, you can’t forget about all the employees that are accessing your network each day. They’re the ones who could be putting sensitive data at risk by opening phishing e-mails or connecting to unknown WiFi networks.
The following list presents five problems every organization should address when securing their data:
Find an Experienced IT Company
An experienced IT company should be hired to ensure best practices are being followed. Once people understand what needs to be done, they should be able to properly implement security measures themselves. IT professionals should teach users about potential risks and how simple actions can prevent a serious problem from occurring. They may also implement privileged access management solutions to further improve your data security.
Be Aware of the Dark Web and its Dangers
Hackers have been known to sell personal information on the dark web that has been garnered from data breaches. If you think your information hasn’t been breached, it can be even more dangerous because you won’t know if someone out there is trying to take advantage of your employees or customers. You should routinely monitor the dark web and/or subscribe to a service like RiskIQ .
Spoofing emails is another tactic hackers can use to infiltrate your network. It’s very easy for them to create an email that looks legitimate enough or seems harmless until, of course, it isn’t. You’ll want to have the latest antivirus software installed on every device and ensure employees are aware not to open emails from unknown sources, especially if they’re coming in from well-known banks, financial institutions and other businesses.
Be Wary of Insecure Networks
Hackers don’t even need to install software when connecting to a WiFi network that’s open or not protected by password. Once they’re on it, all their activities can be monitored in plain sight. You’ll want to ensure your network is encrypted with a password or VPN connection.
Beware of Malware & Backdoors
Malicious software can be installed on your personal devices in order to gain access to your sensitive information through keylogging, screen captures, GPS monitoring and more. Make sure you have one of the latest anti-virus programs running on all your computers, tablets and smartphones on a regular basis.
If your organization’s network hasn’t been compromised, it’s not enough to just have the technology in place to defend yourself from hackers. You also need to proactively educate employees about potential threats and how they can help keep data safe by taking simple precautions each day.