How to Safeguard Small Business Data from Cyber Attacks

Despite the many admirable advantages of going online with your business bookkeeping in Brisbane, you also have to be aware of its drawbacks. Like any business venture, knowing what you’re going in for is the best safeguard against failure.

I have been extensively exposed to both bookkeeping and clouding. Clouding is the system wherein office processes and data storage are done over the internet. As a professional, I firmly believe that the benefits of paperless office systems far outweigh the risks. In this article, I will try to discuss all possible drawbacks and challenges of going online with the goal of minimizing if not completely eliminating the risks. My business is 100% online and 100% safe and secure.

What makes you vulnerable?

The most blatant risk of going virtual is the theft of your devices. Laptops, tablets, and smartphones can be easily stolen. Unless you have a good backup system, data stored in stolen devices are good as gone. And even if your database is securely kept in cloud storage facilities, there are high possibilities that key access information and passwords are kept somewhere within the mobile device.

How do you store and manage data among multiple devices? Using removable media devices like USB drives, CDs, and external hard drives can be efficient in transferring files where you need it. But using such devices with other computers and systems is unsafe. Files and information are not the only thing transmitted, you might also be downloading viruses and bugs to your system.

Weak firewalls and security filters can also make your business database vulnerable to attacks.

Tips on Keeping your Business from Cyber Attacks

All components of your business data system should be secured. Simpler systems are easier to maintain and to secure. As much as possible, design a straightforward record keeping. Get the help of a Brisbane bookkeeping expert who knows local business practices and laws and can identify your business needs and eliminate the superfluous.  

Ø  Hardware – Take all precautions to prevent physical theft of your devices. Set up data security protocols in case your computers, tablets, or phone are compromised. There are many security services available for this purpose. Mobile phone and laptop companies offer ‘kill’ applications that will automatically shut down your device upon your advice. All vital information stored in the device should be encrypted.

Ø  Access – Limit access to your company database. Give access only as needed. So you give your marketing manager access to your marketing files, but not to production folders. Departmentalizing access will minimize risks and is easier to audit. Require strong passwords and periodic password change. Make sure to revoke access to employees before you advise them of termination.

Ø  Security System – Computer systems and most online applications come with firewalls and other security measures. Firewalls protect your system from malwares, spywares, and other viruses. It can also control access to your files. But if you have extensive business database to keep safe, it is advisable for you to invest in its security. This is especially true to businesses who keep personal and financial information of clients. Make sure that your IT group set up a strong firewall to your database. If you don’t have an internal IT department, hire an internet security firm to develop a safe computer environment for your business. This can be pricey but this can also be your best security investment.

Ø  Software and Applications – Always update your software and applications used online. Updates are designed to patch discovered vulnerable points and correct errors in the system. This also applies to your anti-virus software. Anti-virus updates are designed to counter new threats.

Ø  Files and Information – Establish a back-up system to counter risks of information loss. The backup files should be stored in a separate place with access provided to different person/s. You should also maintain a file inventory – monitored and updated. Destroy and discard files you no longer need using safe and secure methods.

Ø  Wireless Network – Always secure your wireless network. Limit access to people in your company and use passwords to control it.

The security of your business database is not only for your company’s benefit. It is also your obligation to your clients and customers who trusted you with their vital information. A good Brisbane bookkeeper should be able to help you design a system that will ensure the safety of your business data from cyber-attacks.