Wouldn’t it be nice if only large corporations had to worry about cybersecurity? They have the I.T. staff, infrastructure, and financing to deal with the threat of cyber-crime. Small to medium businesses simply don’t have the same level of resources.
Unfortunately, cyber-criminals have learned this and increasingly targeting small to medium businesses. So what, as a business owner, can you do to protect your company while keeping your I.T. expenses within your budget? Here are five ways, you can save money on cybersecurity and keep your business safe.
1. Train, Train, Train
Most cyber attacks that hit small to medium businesses are not that sophisticated. Cyber-criminals rely on employees that have not been properly trained to fall for phishing emails, fail to use a strong password, and click on suspicious links. Training is one of the most effective and inexpensive ways to protect your business.
2. Create and Enforce Strong Policies
Many small to medium business have not implemented digital security policies. Others have a policy but rarely remind staff members of these rules or enforce them when broken. Often, the policy is just a page at the back of the employee manual. Since your business data is at risk, it is critical to have an up-to-date policy. It is essential that all employees are aware of the policy and that there is an enforcement mechanism when these rules are violated.
3. Focus on the Most Important
In the best possible scenario, you could protect all of your data and systems, but that might be more than your budget allows. And, honestly, some data is more critical than others. Do an audit of all of your data and systems. Determine which systems are the most critical and the most vulnerable. What data, if breached, would be the most damaging for your business operations, clients, or reputation? Focus on protecting what is most important an invest your limited resources there.
4. Move to the Cloud
For small to medium businesses, maintaining your own in-house servers is not as cost-effective as it used to be. By moving your data and applications to the cloud, you can save the expense of hardware and maintenance and take advantage of the built-in security many cloud services offer. This is a great way to save money while improving your overall cybersecurity.
5. Have a Response Plan
Cyber attacks are always bad news. Even organizations with massive budgets and the latest cybersecurity measures can fall victim to a breach. If you want to save money on cybersecurity, have a clear response plan. As expensive as a cyber attack can be, it will be even worse if you are not prepared. Planning ahead with regular backups, a restoration plan, and protocols to communicate with employees, vendors, and customers will allow you to respond and get back to work as quickly as possible.