Cybersecurity has become more relevant than ever for businesses of all sizes. Since a single cyberattack can cost tens of thousands—if not hundreds of thousands—of dollars in damages, they have the potential to bankrupt small or medium-sized businesses.
Understanding the most common risks companies face when it comes to cybersecurity is essential for controlling and mitigating vulnerabilities to prevent an attack. Here are the five most common security risks for businesses.
1. Outdated Software
If your company doesn’t keep up with software updates, chances are you’re running on outdated software versions that could cause security and network vulnerabilities.
As software is constantly being updated, regularly checking for and installing these updates can resolve potential security gaps and keep your systems more secure with minimal effort.
Should any software patches come out, you’ll also want to install these. Running your systems on the most current software doesn’t just help reduce your risk for a cybersecurity breach, but increases the overall efficiency of your networks as well.
2. Untrained Employees
Employees pose one of the most significant risks to cybersecurity for businesses, particularly if they haven’t been trained on best practices when creating passwords, using technology, and storing information.
From phishing emails to leaving information out in the open to social engineering, employees can easily put sensitive data at risk. It’s vital to train your employees on basic cybersecurity practices to keep information safe and ensure they follow company policy when accessing files or storing credentials.
Creating a security-focused culture at your organization can make it easier for employees to follow protocol and reduce your company’s overall risk.
3. Vendor and Supply Chain Vulnerabilities
Your contractors, vendors, and supply chain networks can all have vulnerabilities that could indirectly compromise your information. These third-party security risks may not have anything to do with the security of your own systems, but hackers can use vendors and contractors to potentially gain access to your information or networks.
To help mitigate this risk, ask your vendor to abide by your company’s protocol to keep data secure. Both you and your vendors should have preventative measures in place, a response plan, and undergo regular audits. In addition, contractors and vendors should train their employees or subcontractors on best cyber hygiene practices as well.
4. Unsecure Storing or Sharing of Passwords
Employees and other personnel can store passwords inappropriately, such as on physical paper, in a web browser, an email, or even a spreadsheet.
Keeping passwords stored this way doesn’t just pose a security vulnerability for your business—it may also violate cybersecurity data regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Some companies may also share passwords among employees, whether via email or in apps. Have a firm policy in place for employees to safely store and share passwords, but only when strictly necessary and while abiding by company policy.
5. Not Having Preventative Measures in Place
Adopting a mindset that you’ll deal with a cyberattack when it happens is never an effective strategy to keep your business protected. Regardless of the size of your business, having preventative measures in place is crucial to mitigate your risk for such an attack and the resulting consequences.
Preventative measures include everything from employee training to firewalls to dark web monitoring, data backups, and penetration testing. Even if you can’t afford an in-house professional to manage your IT security, there are outsourcing options so you can harness the expertise and protection you need at an affordable price.
How manageable is your business’ risk for a cyberattack? Find out more about cost-effective cybersecurity solutions by contacting neteffect technologies today.