10 New Year’s Cybersecurity Resolutions You Can Make in 2020
The New Year brings a fresh perspective and the opportunity to make positive changes. While health and lifestyle goals are important, resolutions to improve your security can give you peace of mind and help your business stay protected from the dangers of the digital world.
While you’re jotting down your plans for 2020, keep these ten New Year’s cybersecurity resolutions in mind:
- Update and change all of your passwords. It seems obvious to use the same passwords for all of your online accounts because it’s easy to remember. The downside is that if a hacker gets into one account, they can get into all of them. What might start as someone hacking into your Netflix could become a serious concern when they also login to PayPal. At a corporate level, make it a priority to enforce good password policies and schedule password change dates throughout the year for all employees.
- Don’t let your wi-fi habits get you in trouble. Something as simple as browsing Facebook in a coffee shop can set you up for identity theft, or worse. Public wi-fi is convenient, but it’s also dangerous. Hackers can easily use it to skim information from your device while it’s connected. This is especially problematic if you have sensitive company data in your possession. If you absolutely must work from public wif-fi, install a VPN that will encrypt and protect your information during transmission over the network.
- Monitor your apps and downloads before you install. Business apps are rife with hackers who are trying to trick innocent people into downloading something malicious to their work devices. Before you install anything on your personal or work device that you will use to access business data, check with your in-house IT specialist or do some online digging. Many times, others who have fallen into the trap will share their experiences to help protect others.
- If you aren’t using it yet, it’s time to bring multi factor authentication into your cybersecurity toolbox. It’s a simple process that combines a username/password login process with some other means of identity verification. This could be a biometric reading, typing in a code sent to another device, or answering a series of user-specific questions. It adds an extra layer of protection that could prove invaluable if a breach were to occur.
- Have a plan in place in case of disaster. A disaster recovery plan is an integral part of your business continuity plan. By identifying your weak points and coming up with a clear contingency plan, you are helping to ensure that your business is able to bounce back after a disastrous event. By establishing preventative measures and taking precautions, you can detect, mitigate, and recover from a worst case scenario.
- Use various methods of backing up information to recover quickly. Along with your disaster recovery plan, you’ll also want to have backups of your most critical operational data to available when you’re ready to conduct business again. Use a combination of cloud-based and hard-drive based storage to ensure maximum protection.
- Don’t let cloud sprawl get out of hand. It’s tempting to let the cloud handle all of the heavy lifting when it comes to running various instances and processes, but this can quickly escalate to an unmanageable expense. While your employees are likely not fully cognizant of the cost of maintaining massive amounts of cloud data, they need to be trained on keeping sprawl under control.
- Avoid pirated software. Your business could face serious trouble if your employees are found using unauthorized programs. What you save in money in the short term is going to cost you in reputation, fines, and legal fees down the road. In addition, many pirated programs carry serious malware that can make the situation worse. Illegal software + a hacker= the perfect opportunity for a ransomware attack.
- Dedicate serious time to training anyone who uses your network. While you can make the resolution to protect your corporate network, it’s going to take a team effort to follow through. The larger your team, the more factors that play into whether or not your network is protected. Training, information, and open conversations about network safety is vital.
- Work with people who know cybersecurity inside and out. In 2020, make the commitment to truly protect your business. Hackers are getting smarter, but cybersecurity tools are getting more powerful. Experts can establish a protective barrier between you and the dangers that threaten businesses everyday. Keep your employees, customers, and data safe this year with Verus Corp.