In Albert’s Corner this month, a look at National Cybersecurity Awareness Month.
October has been National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, a government-supported effort to raise awareness about the many forms cyber-threats can take and how to insulate yourself against them.
If you’re like most people, however, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month will have roughly the same impact on you as National Hot Dog Day. In other words, you’ll wait until you have a problem before you take any action. And that’s unfortunate, because there’s a lot at risk including your identity, your financial security and your business.
We’ve all had the anti-virus program that slowed our machine to a crawl, and the result is that we might view online security as more trouble than it’s worth. It’s not, believe us. And a safe online environment these days involves much more than AV software, especially for businesses.
Start with good online hygiene: choose difficult passwords that you change periodically. Last month Yahoo! was hacked, and the personal data of millions of users were compromised. We’re sure that many of them changed their passwords immediately, but how many were using those same passwords on countless other sites? If they were, they’re easy prey for those hackers.
When you do register on a new website, especially a retailer’s site, give as little as possible personal information as possible (as one site puts it: “Personal information is like money. Value it. Protect it.”). And if there’s a choice, turn on two-step verification (or multi-factor verification). This is where your registration is confirmed via a text or email.
That’s just a start. Now multiply that by X employees and you have a sense of the threat to a business owner. Among the larger recent threats to businesses is ransomware, where your system is locked down by malware until you literally pay a ransom to unlock it. How long could your business survive without your data, and what would your clients do if their personal information was breached?
Truth is, cybersecurity in 2016 has far outstripped the simple anti-virus program. The good news is that it doesn’t need to be intrusive, and the investment is small fraction of what’s at stake.
Don’t wait until there’s a problem. Contact us to talk about it.
Albert Blaize is Vice President of Sales and Marketing for TRG Networking. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.