Today, thieves around the world are working day and night to hack the computers and networks of businesses like yours. It’s a scary thought, for sure. But what might be even scarier, is that one of a cyber thieve’s favorite methods for breaking into your computer network involves your employees. That’s because many staff members – at companies large and small – have access to sensitive and confidential information. And just one seemingly small error on their part could inadvertently turn into a large data breach for the benefit of these nefarious criminals.
Potential Security Breaches
To be clear, most employees don’t willingly hand over the keys to your business’s kingdom. Here are a few of the most common instances of such missteps we at Sawyer Solutions have seen in recent years:
- Phishing: This happened to one of our clients in the dermatology industry. He received an email from someone who claimed to be “another physician.” It was actually a spam email that allowed a hacker to access his payroll and banking information. If we had not stepped in and helped our client stop this scam, his company could have lost tens of thousands of dollars from just that one email!
- Repeated/Easy Passwords: Especially if your employees have logins for a large number of programs and sites, they may find it easiest to use the same password or similar passwords each time. In cases like this, if a hacker acquires the login information for just one site or program, they could then potentially have an inroad to all the others.
- Unsecured Networks: More and more, employees work remotely. If someone logs into work from, say, a cafe with an unsecured network, anyone else on the network may be able to access the data on the employee’s device, as well as obtain any data transmitted to and from that computer.
- Unauthorized Applications: Sometimes your employees may decide to download an application for their device as a tool for document conversion, note-taking, photo editing, etc. However, your employee may have unknowingly downloaded an illegitimate application and allowed it to have access to their documents and data.
- Unlocked Computers: If you have employees who have a habit of leaving their computers unlocked when they leave their desk, this could be a major security concern. With an unlocked and unmonitored computer, anyone around could access information on the device and network.
How to Protect Your Team From Cyber Threats
If your employees are unaware of these potential threats, then it’s all the more difficult to protect them and your business’s data. But the good news is there are ways to turn your employees from your weakest link into your first line of cyber defense.
- Training: By making your employees aware of potential security hacks, they will be better prepared to recognize and avoid them in the future. Interactive presentations, videos, and even test emails can be ways to educate your staff on the danger of cyberattacks.
- Managed Security: Even if your employees know not to click on suspicious emails, mistakes can still happen. By partnering with an IT security service, you can evaluate your business for potential cyberattacks and have measures put in place to strengthen your defenses.
- Remote Work Policies: As many companies are operating remotely, the lack of control over company devices can cause additional threats. By implementing remote work policies, such as where devices can be used, requirements on how often to update passwords, and who is allowed access to certain devices, you can create extra security measures for your business while personnel work off-site.
A Fully Secured Business
While managed IT security services can have a significant and positive impact on protecting your data from cyber threats, your business cannot be fully secure without the participation of your employees. The professionals at Sawyer Solutions can help train staff on all manner of threats.
Contact us at ContactUs@SawyerSolutionsLLC.com for more information on how we can safeguard your business from data breaches, malware, and other cybersecurity attacks! In the meantime, visit our website for more information about the services we provide.