According to a recent survey on IT spending, 75% of business are planning to invest more into IT security in 2016 than they did in 2015. Why all the sudden interest in beefing up IT security? An increase in cyberattacks against businesses might be one reason. This year, we saw some of the largest and most publicized cyberattacks committed against companies. But large corporations like Target aren’t the only target (pun intended). Small and medium businesses are at risk to. It’s estimated that almost 17,000 businesses experience a cyber-attack each year. If a business isn’t prepared, a cyber-attack could cause some serious setbacks and may even put the company out of business. Here are four ways that businesses can improve their IT security.
Computer viruses have a lot in common with real viruses. Just as real viruses mutate and become more resilient to medication, computer viruses become more advanced even as we attempt to create ways to block them. Hackers are becoming more advanced and are creating viruses that are encrypted and can fool older firewall systems. Because many businesses use outdated firewall systems, or routers that aren’t designed to read encryption, they are more vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
New viruses are being created every day. Even if your business has invested in antivirus at the workstation level, you could be opening yourself up to a cyber-attack if every single employee isn’t updating the antivirus software on their computers constantly. A safer solution is to have a centrally managed antivirus solution that is constantly updating all of the workstations so you’re more protected.
Patches are quick fixes that fix any security gaps that are discovered. Operating systems like Microsoft regularly release patches as they become aware of gaps in the security. Just like with antivirus, every workstation needs to be constantly updated so that the operating system has the latest patches installed. Again, it’s best to have a centrally managed solution so that all of the workstations have the latest patches.
No matter how good your IT security, it’s crucial that your employees are also receive security training. At the very least, they should know how to keep their workstation safe while online. They should be trained to recognize phishing scams and social media malware and they should be able to recognize when their computer might be infected with a virus.
Managed IT services provides the ultimate security
The most surefire way to defend your business from a cyber-attack is to invest in managed IT services. A sophisticated provider will have the most advanced firewall and centralized antivirus systems available to keep your company safe from cyber threats. They will also automatically backup your company’s data offsite so in a worst-case scenario, you won’t lose your important information.