One of the things that no business owner wants to think about is the loss of sensitive data stored on company computers. This can happen in a number of ways, from a hacker gaining access to a system and copying a database, to a computer being stolen from your office.
There are several precautions you should take as an owner so that if something like this happens, you have some recourse for recovering your information. Here are six simple things you can do now to protect yourself against data loss.
Back Up Your Data Regularly
When it comes down to it, backing up your data is probably the best way to protect yourself from data loss, regardless of what type of data loss you’re worried about. If someone breaks into your system, you can rest assured that if the data was regularly backed up on an external source, chances are you won’t lose any information. Your data backup should not only include sensitive programs, information, and documents but also a general backup from the top to the bottom of your business operation. It’s not just data infiltration, theft, and hacking that can happen. Widespread data damage and loss can also happen during natural and man-made disasters. Your backup system should be perfect for cloud-based DR (Disaster Recovery) contingency planning by ensuring the continuity of your business by making all your necessary business information backed up as a whole or in separate batches, depending on the cloud storage capacity. What this means is more convenience in locating and retrieving your backup information than a physical storage device. Also, the cloud-based backup system preserves data integrity and does not deteriorate over time, unlike physical storage locations, which can be prone to data corruption and loss when left unused.
Install Security Software
There are a number of security suites available for every type of computer out there, just make sure that the software is compatible with all the computers in your office. Also, depending on your type of business, it may be necessary to have some more specific security software running on top of your general security suite. You also need to keep in mind that most anti-virus programs will not detect things like this before they happen. The best way to protect yourself against these types of threats is to keep regular backups so you can recover lost data quickly if a problem does occur.
Boost Your Password Security
If you use one password for all your computers, you’re just asking for trouble. Hackers and cyber-criminals are good at what they do and chances are, if they get into one system, they’ll try that same password on another computer. Make sure that each computer has its own unique password so it can’t be easily compromised by a hacker who breaks into one system in your office connected to the internet.
Update Regularly and Ensure Your Systems Are Secure
You need to make sure that all your computers have the latest software installed on them and the newest virus signatures so hackers have less of a chance to compromise your system. After all, the best way to protect yourself from hackers is to make sure they can’t get into your systems at all because you’ve got up-to-date security software installed on every computer in your office.
Ensure All Systems Are Secure and Properly Firewalled
If one computer doesn’t have any security software installed, then it becomes that much easier for a hacker to gain access to other computers on the network. The same goes for improperly configured firewalls or no firewall at all. Hackers are usually very resourceful people and will go around security measures if they can, so be sure to secure all your systems properly with both updated software and properly configured firewalls.
Have a Plan C or More When Backing Up Your Data
As discussed earlier, with the average computer costing anywhere from $500 to over $1500, nobody wants to think about their system getting stolen or destroyed in a fire or other incident. Fortunately, there are several options available out there for backing up your systems regularly and then backing them up again in case something like this happens. Having more than just a plan B for your data backup helps ensure that your business can get over any disruptions and resume operations immediately without having to start from scratch.
If something does happen, you want to ensure you can get your data back quickly so that operations at your business aren’t severely impacted by whatever incident has occurred. Recovery is very important so make sure all your systems are set up with backup software and properly configured so you know they’ll work if you ever need to use them.