All about computer security
IT security concerns everyone, from individuals to the largest companies and contractors. You are responsible for your company’s digital assets, and you need to make sure they are well protected. Here are a few tips to protect yourself from computer attacks.
Why establish computer security measures?
We see it almost daily, viruses and other malware are ubiquitous on the Internet. Whether it’s stealing sensitive data or compromising your servers, these attacks are a reality and you owe it to yourself to protect yourself against these threats.
Any information system must be secure, not only to ensure the smooth operation of your business, but also to avoid the sometimes dramatic financial consequences that can result from its compromise. You are also responsible in the eyes of justice for the sensitive data of your customers that you process. You must therefore make sure that you do everything possible to ensure that they are effectively protected, if only to avoid any legal proceedings.
Establish a computer security plan
The first step in ensuring the security of information systems is to establish a computer security plan. This consists of performing a computer security audit to measure the perimeter of your computer system to be protected and determine the best way to achieve it.
To help you increase your level of security, here is a series of questions to ask yourself:
- What do you need to protect? This will most often be your contact database, their sensitive data (health, card number…) or your company’s confidential files.
- What are the potential threats? On the Internet, the list of people who could be angry at your data is very large. It could be a disgruntled competitor or former employee, or simply a hacker looking for bank account numbers to empty.
- What would be the consequences of an intrusion? Here you need to know how a hacker would act with your data: would he copy it or would he destroy your entire database?
- How well should you protect your data? This is a question of assessing the risks of the current situation. If your customer base is already on a secure server, you won’t need to protect it even more, just control access.
- Are you ready to lose user comfort? The more secure the data access is, the more difficult it will be to access it. You need to keep this in mind when implementing your IT security plan. You need to find the right balance between addressing your vulnerabilities and the lack of usability of drastic security solutions.
Control your company’s internet access
A good IT security plan will not work if you do not control every access to your company’s network. You need to review all access points: desktops, Wi-Fi hotspots, and even portable devices such as smartphones and tablets. They all need to be treated equally and secured appropriately. It only takes one of them to be unattended for a hacker to steal your data.
To make it easier for you, you can try to limit the number of these access points. If your budget allows, you can provide your employees with the appropriate computer equipment so that they don’t use their own devices. You can’t control these devices, and you can’t verify that they are properly configured.
Filter websites intelligently
These days, you can no longer prevent your employees from going to sites that are not relevant to their work, whether it’s social networks or music or video streaming sites. The vast majority of them are secure enough that you don’t have to worry.
But you should set up a filter for less desirable sites to anticipate threats that could compromise the security of your system’s data. Pornographic sites, for example, are not only not to be visited in the office, but they are also known to be a nest of hackers, hiding all kinds of viruses and malware behind advertisements and pop-ups. You should also beware of illegal download sites and other sites that encourage you to download third-party applications.
Don’t forget mobile devices
As we saw above, your employees’ personal mobile devices are an easy entry point for hackers. So you need to encourage them to properly secure their smartphones and other tablets if they want to bring them into the office. If you feel the risk is too great, don’t hesitate to provide them with professional devices, which they will need to use for any work-related activity.
Don’t hesitate to ask a security consultant or a company specialized in analyzing the risks of piracy to secure the terminals, especially to facilitate their updating. Moreover, the explosion of nomadism and teleworking makes it much easier to lose or steal these devices, as well as cyber attacks. You must therefore put in place the necessary protections (encryption, firewalls…) so that no one can access sensitive data or, in the worst case, allow remote deletion.
The security of computer systems and data protection is not reserved for the largest companies or government departments. It concerns absolutely everyone, private individuals as well as companies of all sizes. As an entrepreneur, you owe it to yourself to implement an effective strategy to protect your sensitive data and to train your employees to avoid human error. You can conduct a security audit of your information systems, as well as intrusion tests, to ensure the quality of your computer network security policy and identify possible security breaches.