The importance of security (both online and offline) for your business cannot be overemphasised if you intend to run a business that can stand the test of time. Most business inadvertently ignore security measures and put their entire business at risk. An adequate data security plan can protect your business from threats that could take down your systems and expose sensitive customer information.

In a survey (asking 1,440 IT professionals in 10 countries some pointed questions about their confidence in their security systems) commissioned by Dell, almost half of businesses don’t feel protected against breaches. You may have some of the best security measures or policies for your business, but it’s important to keep them updated at all times.

The business protection plan you used last year may not fully protect your business from malware or cyber attack this year. Attackers are as advanced as the defenders – and most business data breaches don’t always come from the same expected direction.

There are lots of business risks you can avoid if you take the necessary steps to protect your business now. If your business relies heavily on the internet, and you access business data from anywhere, you can’t be too sure that all your company information is secure. Take every necessarily step today to make sure all your online business activities are safe, secured and protected from cyber crime. Better security solutions will not only reduce your chances of being breached but will also ensure that you keep your customers confidence.

Common security breaches that can be avoided.

Some of the most common security breaches in small businesses can be traced to;

1. Unauthorized access to your computers or servers (mostly due to inadequate firewalls or weak passwords).

2. Spyware. One of the key internal threats to most companies is spyware. They are often introduced without malicious intent by internal employees who naively click through a couple of pop-up browser windows, or install an unapproved applications on the network. Spywares often get around acceptable use policies of some of the biggest corporations by exploiting employee’s inquisitive nature.

3. Weak data encryption systems. Businesses that store or exchange personal user information like credit card data, medical information and financial data should not take encyrption for granted.

4. Failing to change past employee logins. Most companies overlook this simple security procedure. Not all breaches security happen because somebody has hacked into your network or stolen a password. A simple process to remove all past employee accounts from your system could cause the most damage.

A number of security breaches can be carried out by disgruntled employees or past employees who left on bad terms. They can delete important data, or remove it from the system completely if they still have access to business information.

What you should be doing to protect and secure your business 

1. Hire the right people is one of the best ways to manage and protect your business. Your employees will have access to private and sensitive business data. You have to be very sure of who you are bringing in to access business information.

2. Invest in only the best security apps. Don’t compromise on business security software. Your business depends on its data to run successfully. Use some of the most robust security apps specifically for your industry to prevent business data breaches.

3. One of the best ways to protect your business data is to encrypt your sensitive data. This process will make it difficult for attackers to access your business information even if there are able to get their hands on it.

4. Maintain a strong password policy. A lot of people use simple passwords that are easy for hackers to guess. Hackers use automated tools to combine words and numbers to crack passwords. Insist on the creation of the strongest employee passwords. Weak passwords are some of the most ways both individuals and businesses are hacked to attacked.

5. Backup (This is not an option but a necessity). Your best option at retrieving lost data is through proper backup. Ensure that your data is properly backed up, and test the backup to ensure that the information can be recovered when you need it.

6. Isolate sensitive data. Keep sensitive information on the fewest number of computers or servers. Segregate it from the rest of your data and network if you can. The fewer copies of data you have, the easier it is to protect it. Restrict access to that data. Access should be limited ton only a few employees.

If your present security system doesn’t make you feel safe when you leave the office, you should start doing something about it immediately.