Here are the Most Popular Ways Hackers Access Your Network…
Did you know that if you are online in any way, you are under attack? Cybercriminals in China, Russia, and Ukraine are actively looking for ways to access small businesses like yours to steal client information, banking information and credit cards. Some governments even fund these people to attack American businesses, and the majority are actually targeting small business. In fact, one out of five small businesses were victims of these kind of attacks last year according to the National Cyber Security Alliance.
There are 8 ways that cybercriminals access your network. Review these areas to see where you may be vulnerable.
Poorly Trained Employees
The most common way networks get affected is through phishing emails. Just one click on a link provided in one of these “scam emails” can compromise your entire network. These emails are created to appear legitimate – from a trusted source or maybe even someone you do business with. It is critical that your employees know how to spot a phishing email and online scams.
Loose Policies Regarding Internet Access on Work and Personal Devices
We strongly recommend to our clients that they limit not only the websites that employees are allowed to access through their work computers, but also the access to work areas allowed from personal devices. This is easy to accomplish by setting up “permissions” regulating access from company devices. We can even allow certain employees greater access than others. And, we can restrict certain areas from outside computers and mobile devices access.
It is important to enforce the use of complex passwords. We recommend 8 characters, using both upper and lower case, at least one number and one special character. Passwords should never be saved on devices – especially personal devices that may not employ the proper level of security. Two factor authentication can also be used to secure especially sensitive data. Finally, company cellphones and laptops should always require a passcode to make stolen devices more difficult to access.
Failing to Update Software
Quite often if commonly used software being used in your network is not updated, it can be exploited by hackers. We are referring to software that is available to the general public like Microsoft Office. Hackers find new vulnerabilities in the software then find a network using that software to gain access. It is very important to keep up with all software update. Clients on our managed IT plan enjoy the security of automated updates.
Not Having Multiple Backup Locations
Often hackers will “steal” your files and hold them for ransom until a fee is paid. Multiple backups keep you from falling prey to these tactics. Solid backups also come in handy in the event of a natural disaster or accidental deletion.
Malicious Software Downloads
Hackers love to use harmless looking games, files, or apps, embedded with malicious software that allows them access to your network. Prevent this type of intrusion with employee monitoring and training,
Weak Firewalls with Little to No Monitoring
A firewall to your network is like a guard to your palace – a weak one isn’t much good. Its job is to block unauthorized access in and out of your network. The firewall, like your software, should also be regularly monitored and maintained.
Conducting Business on Wi-Fi That is Not Secure
Did you know that cybercriminals will set up their own Wi-Fi to “pose” as a legitimate public access? Once you connect to their Wi-Fi, you are vulnerable. To keep this from happening restrict your employee access to your network outside of your business, and check with the facility to get the proper name of the Wi-Fi they are providing. Never use your credit card or access sensitive data while using public Wi-Fi.
If you are concerned about the security of your network, maybe it is time for a security assessment. Total Tech can design a managed security plan scaled to your business needs. You’ve worked hard to build your business – maybe even years to acquire your clients and good reputation. Why risk losing it all? You wouldn’t leave your business unlocked all night. Chances are your network has even more value stored in it than your building.