How to Protect Against Cyberattacks in 2021

Many small businesses turn a blind eye to cybersecurity, adopting an “it couldn’t happen to us” attitude regarding cyberthreats is a great idea. 

But that false sense of security simply leaves them wide open to a multitude of cybercriminal activity — from malware and ransomware to brute force and other data breaches.

In fact, there’s a cyberattack every 39 seconds with data being stolen at the rate of 75 records per second. This should come as no surprise, since over 300,000 pieces of new malware being created each day to be used as powerful hacking tools that can break through the most rigorous security measures.

And, contrary to popular belief, it’s not just the big companies that are being targeted. Small businesses account for over half of all cyberattacks in the United States.

What Cybersecurity Issues are Leaving Your Data Vulnerable?

There are several weaknesses hackers take advantage of to access sensitive data, the foremost of which is our continued reliance on digital technology for business. 

With that in mind, there are a few areas that businesses should be aware of for better data protection.

Outdated Software and Hardware

Running outdated software on an unpatched IT infrastructure can pose a severe security risk. Yet, many companies with small or non-existent IT departments struggle to keep up with software and hardware updates and patches. 

However, new releases of software and patches for firmware often incorporate antivirus protections, bug fixes for security issues, and other remedies for data protection.

Wireless Technologies

With more employees working from home or on the go, wireless mice and keyboards are a common sight in public areas. 

But these conveniences can be an entry point for cybercriminals who can take over the associated computer or tablet from these devices so long as they’re within a specific range — generally a football field away. 

Public Wi-Fi, another heavily used technology for remote workers, also allows hackers easy access to mobile devices.

Unencrypted Data

Hackers can gain access to unencrypted data on lost or stolen laptops, removable hard drives, and USB drives with ease. Businesses should consider encrypted disks for all mobile devices and software such as BitLocker for removable media.

Phishing Emails

Phishing emails — emails sent to an individual to get them to divulge sensitive personal or organizational information — are a common threat. 

Making staff aware of these threats through a targeted employee training and education program is the first step in building a cybersecurity awareness program that can keep threats to a minimum.

How to Protect Against Cyberattacks Right Now

There are several best practices savvy businesses can employ to reduce the possibility of cyberattacks. They include:

  • Using a virtual private network (VPN) for remote workers rather than public Wi-Fi
  • Requiring strong passwords and encouraging regular password resets
  • Educating employees on cybersecurity best practices
  • Controlling and limiting access to company data
  • Tracking and monitoring all corporate devices
  • Limited the use of corporate devices for personal use
  • Requiring two-factor authentication for corporate logins
  • Keeping abreast of updates and infrastructure patches
  • Considering the use of secure backups such as Cloud-based platforms and secure on-premises backups
  • Creating and deploying a written small business cybersecurity plan

Of all of these, one of the best ways to stay protected is to keep your infrastructure up to date with the latest technology. Current models of office equipment will always have the most recent security features to keep your data secure and protected.

Secure Your Data and Get Peace of Mind Today

If you’re looking to upgrade your office equipment to optimize your data security, you’ll want to work with a company that understands the requirements of small and medium-sized businesses.

At Office Technologies, we have 27 years of expertise supplying our small and medium-sized business clients with the highest quality office equipment — and service — in the industry. Not only can we provide expert IT solutions for your business environment, but we can also streamline workflow and save you money at the same time.

Ready to secure the latest technology for your organization? Get in touch with an Office Technologies representative today for more information.