Did you know that 60% of small businesses that get hacked close within 6 months after the incident? What’s really scary is that the vast majority of hacking opportunities come because of a few basic oversights on the business owner’s part. How can you prevent a #data breach and avoid liability for information loss? Here are 3 things you need to do right now to protect your customer data:
- Change your passwords: Quick! Is your server password the same as the password to your Facebook? Or was the last time you changed your password in the previous presidential administration? Changing your passwords on a regular basis is one key tool in preventing unauthorized access to your systems. Ideally, you’ll use a different password for every login you have, but realistically? That is a lot of passwords to remember. Considering using a tool like LastPass or something similar. This password manager software will hold your passwords for most sites, allowing you to login without having to remember if you used your dog’s birthday or the release of Star Wars for your social media.
- Update your software: Yes, it’s very tempting to keep telling Siri you’ll update your Mac OS later, but continuing to use out of date software means you are allowing the wholes in their security to remain open. Microsoft releases new software patches for their operating systems and programs every month that take into account new viruses and programs that have found ways to compromise their code and hijack computers. Sure, it’s a drag to have to stop work in order to install updates, but you can always set it to happen while you’re at lunch.
- Delete old user accounts: Remember that secretary you had for 6 months? You both may have forgotten how to login to her email, but hackers can figure it out easily enough. Reviewing user accounts for all of your information can help you plug leaks before they become major issues. If you are concerned about losing customers used to emailing a certain person after a transition in the workplace, you can set up automatic forwarding and automatic response for 6 months. This will let the clients know that things have changed and they have a new point of contact, while you get their messages.
Here’s a bonus tip for you. There are websites that can tell you if your accounts were apart of any major data breaches and what information was accessed. You can get a list of them here and check all of your email addresses to see what damage control you need to do.