Angela Fitch, Development Manager from the Federation of Small Businesses writes for the Observer
Businesses are undoubtedly becoming increasingly dependent upon technology. Computers, tablets and smart phones are essential tools for most and websites, Twitter accounts and LinkedIn, are the norm. With technology comes a new type of security which is just as important as locking the door when you close up at the end of your working day, cyber security!
FSB’s Top Ten Tips to data security
1. Identify your assets – what would a criminal target and how would they reach that target?
2. Stay ahead by checking government and other regulatory service websites to see what the latest threats are.
3. Train your staff, and hold refresher sessions, so that they remain vigilant.
4. Install anti-virus, a firewall, anti-malware and anti-spyware onto all of your digital devices.
5. If digital devices are taken off-site train your staff to be vigilant and make this information part of your staff handbook.
6. Draft a recovery strategy to put into place should the worst happen.
7. Adopt a password renewal protocol for your staff – no password should last for more than just a few weeks, less if the data is particularly confidential or sensitive.
8. Always check for ‘https://’ at the beginning of a URL before paying online.
9. Consider taking out insurance.
10. Consider the Data Protection Act – if it can be proved that you failed to protect your data you may be in breach of the Act, which carries fines of up to £500,000!
FSB’s Jargon Buster
Do you know your bloatware from your malware? What’s the difference between a Trojan and a virus? This may be a foreign language to you, but one you need to learn.
Click here www.fsb.org.uk/092/images/fsb-cyber-security-jargon-buster.pdf and visit the FSB’s brief summary of regularly used terminology.
A cautionary tale
Recent breaches in IT security have highlighted that even the ‘big boys’ can be hit, however, as they ramp up their cyber protection the criminal element will turn to softer targets, and that’s where you may be affected.