Your business thrives because of the time and attention that you give it, and the efforts made by your team. Each day your business is faced with important decisions to make as you deal with ongoing challenges and obstacles, many of which require quick thinking. No one wants to be caught off guard, especially when it comes to incidents that could affect the livelihood of the company. We would like to share with you some of the common misconceptions Calgary small business owners have about risks facing their business. Although there are many, we would like to focus on the top 3 IT risks you perhaps never thought could happen to your business.
- Employees can ruin your business
- Loss of data with cloud storage
- Mobile information getting into the wrong hands
Your IT security armour is only as safe as the weakest link. Unfortunately for business owners, one of the fastest growing threats to small businesses is cybercrime which often targets your employees. Believe it or not, employees are the most significant risk when it comes to network compromise and the loss or theft of private information. The fact is, hackers have become more sophisticated and can fool many people into giving up passwords, downloading viruses, and going to malicious websites – just by sending phishing emails.
It is management’s job to make sure all employees are trained and educated on the methods and processes of identifying, avoiding and alerting IT regarding all suspicious emails that pose a threat. No matter the SPAM filters, Anti-virus software, firewalls or other security programs, emails are getting to employees from other compromised contacts and trusted sources.
Calgary IT service providers like YellowWood Networks can provide security audits and scans to determine if there are any holes in your network security. What we have found most helpful is the awareness training and testing that we provide to keep people on their toes and versed in the steps they need to follow to protect the business. This method allows your staff to receive random “fake” phishing emails as a test, along with interactive training videos to keep them properly trained.
Many business owners are not aware that more and more businesses are experiencing the compromise of secure data while some are starting to see the truth that the activity from their staff is creating a huge problem. When staff are not adequately monitored and informed, it will cause a significant risk to the business to the point of going under for good.
CLOUD DATA RISK
With more and more data moving to cloud services, one needs to ask the question, where is your data? And is it protected? Online cloud services are not all equal. We are noticing that business owners believe that their information is safe when it is not as protected as they think it is. One example is Office 365, an application many businesses are using for hosted email services and data storage. Although Microsoft provides redundancies to protect data, they don’t back it up. Your data resides on multiple servers and in different locations, but data back-up is a way to preserve the data in its present state. If it the information is moved, deleted or corrupted, the window of opportunity is small with no long-term data recovery options. Like many other online services used for accounting, ERP, CRM, email, and line of business applications, services may provide redundancy, but that is not enough protection for your data.
Newer solutions are available that will go out to each of your cloud providers and back-up the data and store the information on separate servers with longer retention periods and archive options to protect your data permanently. Seeking the advice of a trusted IT provider will save you a headache when the time comes to retrieve your data and realize it is gone.
MOBILE DATA RISK
No one will argue that mobility has provided the business world with greater agility and flexibility in how we work. From home, abroad, by land or in the air, we are all connected by using mobile technology to its fullest potential. An alarming number of small business owners are without protection for their mobile data. Surprisingly, many past employees will have access to data long after working for the company. Some retain the ability to see emails and data storage logins, and keep information on their personal phones, tablets and laptops.
If you allow employees to access information from any mobile device, restrictions are needed to make sure it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. Mobile device management will allow business owners the ability to monitor activity and protect data regardless of where they may be. This level of protection is especially critical for “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) policies that your company may have. Without this, you will run the risk of seeing your data walk out the door.
It becomes increasingly necessary to adopt stricter guidelines and policies on mobile devices to protect intellectual property, client-sensitive information, and keep compliant with industry and government privacy laws and regulations. Many solutions are available to allow businesses to wipe data remotely, lock devices, track location, multi-factor authentication and encrypt data to ensure their business and customer data is adequately safeguarded.
If you need help with Cloud Computing Services, make sure to contact the experts at YellowWood IT. Small businesses depend on the right technology, at the right time, in the right place, and at YellowWood IT, we have the requisite knowledge to help you and your small business with your technology. Partner with us in confidence, www.yellowwoodit.ca | (844) 387 – 0607