Make sure to create a baseline of security for your current or future store – we serve you six cyber security hacks. Required reading for literally everyone!
Does this relate to me as a small business owner?
Yes! It’s a myth that only larger companies get attacked which automatically makes small businesses easy targets. Most likely you have information about clients, bank accounts and e-commerce that can be useful for a hacker.
Let’s kill the myth that only larger companies get attacked – small businesses are often easy targets!
What is a common IT security flaw today?
Too simple passwords that never get updated and sharing the same password across all applications (i.e. qwerty123 or 123456). Use a unique phrase instead for each application- for example 1n33dT0g0f1SH1ng! = I need to go fishing!) If someone manages to hack one of your accounts, they shouldn’t be able to access all of them.
Security isn’t rocket science – keep it safe, yet keep it simple!
Okay, what can I do now?
- Use 2FA (two-factor authentication) wherever/whenever possible. (Ex. Google Authenticator, Yubikey). Two-factor authentication 2FA is described as an extra layer of security – in addition to username and password one needs another verifying component that only the user possesses.
- Manage your passwords. Use a password manager application (Ex. KeePass, 1Password), it’s basically a software that generates and stores long and complex passwords. As a user, you only need to remember one password, while you use different passwords for different accounts.
- Activate encryption – now! What does encryption actually mean and how can you use it? Well, it’s another word for coding – and therefore a great way of keeping information safe in the public medium that is the Internet. Today’s operating systems (iOS, Windows 10 and more) come with full disk encryption, make sure it’s activated and that everyone who works with you fully use it. Passcode and Touch ID should be turned on!
- Access management from start. Employees come and employees go. Don’t create an admin of everyone – create individual logins for each and everyone working for or with you.
- Care about your customer – and your customer data. Are you collecting customer data? Great if you are for whatever the reason might be (customer loyalty programs, email marketing or anything else that’s adding value to them), but make sure you store it safely, the information should always be encrypted.
- Be careful with public WiFi. Yes, we know how convenient it is with public WiFi networks, but use them with care. A software like Firesheep lets hackers easily get access to your private information and get over account login information. Either encrypt (Blacksheep is one available software) or use your phone as a mobile hotspot.
Kyle Hitchcock is passionate about demystifying technology – to help users look beyond the passing fads and realize that there are many tools available to make their lives and businesses run smoother. In the end it’s about allowing users to focus rather on the task at hand.