Credit card numbers, login credentials, financial information, and proprietary customer details are all data that hackers try to steal when breaching your network. While security and anti-virus software can protect you up to a point, your employees are an important line of defense.
Human error is one of the main causes of data breaches, which is why phishing emails that target unsuspecting users are a key tool that criminals use to gain access to company networks.
Keeping our clients and their data safe is a main mission of Technology Visionaries, which is why we provide free security assessments to evaluate a company’s data security, identify any weak spots, and suggest solutions to secure vulnerabilities.
Part of our security solutions include regular training of employees to teach them things like how to identify a phishing email and creating secure passwords, to ensure the “human factor” of a company’s cybersecurity plan is just as strong as their software.
Just giving a one-time security talk to your staff is only going to last so long. Regular and ongoing reminders of proper security protocols will help ingrain a security mentality in your entire team for years to come.
Tips for Your Employees to Bolster Your Data Security
There have been several notable data breaches in recent months, including well-known companies like the Marriott, Panera Bread, and social media giant, Facebook. But you don’t have to be a large company to suffer the same types of breach related costs and data privacy fines, which get into the tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Over 50% of notifiable data breaches are caused by human error. (National Law Review)
These tips on employee cybersecurity should greatly help your corporate data defenses and protect against unwanted breaches.
1. Don’t Use the Same Password for Everything
Yes, it’s easier to remember that way, but using the same password for all your logins is a big security risk. All a hacker has to do is gain access to one login credential, and they can get into multiple applications.
To help remember multiple passwords, you can use a password management application, that will both generate strong passwords and keep track of them all for you. Make sure you use one that is well respected… Technology Visionaries can help with suggestions.
2. Treat Your Inbox Like Fort Knox
Phishing emails make their way into millions of inboxes daily, just hoping to trick a user into downloading a virus laden attachment or clicking a link to a malicious website. Treat any incoming emails with the same suspicion as if you were guarding the door to Fort Knox.
- Hover over links to reveal the URL before clicking
- View message source to see the real sender email address
- Ask yourself if this email makes sense or if you were expecting it
- Be very wary of any emails using threats or urgency to get a reaction
- Do you know the sender? If not, don’t click
- Be suspicious of fuzzy images, poor grammar, and misspellings
3. Don’t Log In to Anything on Public Wi-Fi
Mobile devices are beginning to take more of the workload from desktop computers as they get more powerful. We’ve become an app driven world and many times an employee may be logging into your office applications while on a public Wi-Fi.
Hackers are just waiting for someone to use an unsecure hotel or airport Wi-Fi, so they can scrape their data and login details. If you have to login while away from home or office, switch over to your cellular provider and turn off Wi-Fi to stay secure or use a virtual private network (VPN).
4. Use Mobile Management Software
If a phone or tablet gets lost or stolen, it’s important to have a way to immediately lock it out of company systems and wipe data remotely if necessary. How exposed is your company information when it comes to staff mobile devices? Mobile management software can help keep everything secure no matter where devices are located.
5. Stop Using Weak Passwords
Passwords are like the key to your car, they keep criminals from getting in and stealing your stuff. If just one employee uses “password123” for their login password, your whole network is at risk.
Strong passwords include the following:
- 7 to 10 characters
- Both upper and lowercase letters
- A combination of letters, symbols, and numbers
- Unexpected word or digit combinations (i.e. don’t use your birthdate)
6. Don’t Install Any Apps or Software without Permission
Your marketing person is trying to be helpful and looking for a free social media tool, they download something that comes up in a popup add, and it turns out to be adware with a virus attached.
It’s a good company rule of thumb to ensure no one downloads software onto their work computer or an app on their work mobile device without having it checked out and getting an “OK” first.
7. Use Multi-Factor Authentication
Many office applications allow you to enable multi-factor authentication for added security. This means that in addition to your user name and password, you’ll need to enter another piece of information to gain access, such as a PIN that is texted to you when you try to log in.
Using multi-factor authentication stops password thieves in their tracks, since they most likely won’t have access to the mobile phone or authentication device that receives the code required to complete login.
Get Your Free Security Assessment Today!
Wondering about the strength of your company’s cybersecurity? You can get a free assessment from Technology Visionaries and know for sure. Schedule yours today by filling out our contact form or calling 732-587-5960.