Fatmir Hyseni is the CMO of Kosbit, a global IT vendor for AT&T and a Strategic Advisor for Critogo, your own extended digital team offering professional feedback and assistance. As an award-winning Chartered Marketer, Fatmir contributes to several digital and technology blogs.Want to learn the basics of online security? Are you wondering how it applies to you and your business?
In this article, you’ll learn the basics of online security so that you can analyse how it applies to your stakeholders, employees, company, and your customers.
Privacy and security should always be your top priority. Ensure you consult a security professional who can build a security programme for your business.
1. Training employees in online security
Your employees are the heart of your company’s security. When it comes to security training, make sure it’s targeted and comprehensive. Keep employees up to date on company policies and guidance, as well as their own responsibilities. Customize training to make sure you train on how to spot a security problem, how to report it, and what to do if something goes wrong.
- Set strong passwords and remind employees how important it is to safeguard your accounts. Make sure staff use different passwords for each account.
- Watch out for phishing schemes. This is when someone tries to trick you into sharing personal information online. It is usually done through fictitious email, ads, or sites designed to look like legitimate businesses.
In addition to training, ensure your employees have access to security-related policies, practices and guidance. Make a review of those policies an annual requirement.
It is also important to make sure your company has a strong security culture. Everyone must play a role in the security of their business. Remember, your employees are your first line of defence. Training them will help your company to develop an online culture of support.
2. Securing employee devices
Many businesses today issue smartphones or laptops to their employees. Establish policies limiting what data is stored on company equipment. If a device contains only information related to their job, there is less risk if the device falls into the wrong hands.
The same applies to mobile devices. If your employees can access company information via smartphones or tablets, think about setting a mobile device management policy. A 2-step verification works by requiring a password and something else in order to log into an account. The secondary verification could be a code sent to a user’s smartphone. This means the account is protected by something they know, like their password, as well as something they physically own, like a phone or security key.
3. Securing networks, systems and software
People looking to access information without authorisation often target company networks, using tools that check for weaknesses. It is important to take steps to defend your company’s network, systems, and software.
The first step is to make sure employees can access only devices that are assigned to them, and enable the services or apps that only the employee needs to do their job on those devices. To keep information confidential, you could also consider encrypting data being stored on any device or service. Data sent internally and externally should always be encrypted to prevent unauthorized access.
Intruders can be a threat to the security of any network, but there are steps you can take to help protect your business data online.
Network segmentation, or splitting a network into smaller networks, can also help by splitting a computer network into smaller networks – or subnetworks – and separating them from each other. Segmenting systems can help you keep information isolated to where it needs to be.
Another useful step is to create a record of your company’s digital assets. This record can include determining if your platforms are up to date, what accounts have access, what hardware is used, and who uses your devices. Answering these questions will help you identify your online assets and create an asset inventory.
To wrap up, taking proactive steps to secure your company systems in advance – is vital to reducing the risk of unauthorised access.
4. Creating a secure online customer experience
With more businesses going online, it’s important to prioritise your customers’ online security.
Let’s start with your website. Make sure only people whose job involves managing your website can access the systems you use to update and host it.
You should also use HTTPS. This encrypts the connection between a user’s browser and a website, and it will protect your website even if you don’t think you handle sensitive information. Moving to HTTPS can improve your website’s ranking on search engines.
Another area to consider is your email. Choose a provider that uses Transport Layer Security (TLS) to make sure your communications are encrypted. And remember, 2-step verification is useful for anything you log into, not just email.
Following these steps will help increase website and communications security, and provide benefits for you and your customers.
Author Biography – Fatmir Hyseni
Fatmir Hyseni is the CMO of Kosbit, a global IT vendor for AT&T and a Strategic Advisor for Critogo, your own extended digital team offering professional feedback and assistance. As an award-winning Chartered Marketer, Fatmir contributes to several digital and technology blogs.