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Business Unplugged™
This blog features Carol Roth's tough love on business and entrepreneurship, as well as insights from Carol's community of contributors.

Cybersecurity and Your Small Business

Written By: Catherine Morgan | No Comments

If you have a business, you’re most likely using technology for some (or all!) aspects of it. With technology comes great things, but also some risks.

Carol’s recent post on MasterCard Biz, “5 Things You Should Know about Cybersecurity,” tells you what you need to know to keep you – and your customers – safe. She begins:

It seems that you can’t turn on your computer without seeing yet another story about database hacking and cybersecurity breaches.  And while it’s tempting to just tune out, it’s important not to. Small businesses and large businesses alike are being targeted at increasing rates by cyber hackers.

Here are some basic things you should know in an effort to keep your business, your employees – and your technology – safer.

Beware Public Wi-Fi

When you or your employees are stuck in an airport on your way to a meeting or prepping in a coffee shop, good public Wi-Fi feels like a gift. We’re all prone to jumping on free networks to fill time in between, but know that you do so at your own risk.

Hackers can intercept the data you’re transferring by exploiting security flaws in the router – or even by providing rogue hotspots to unsuspecting users.

Consider instituting a VPN (virtual private network) policy for all devices used for your business to protect your data when using public networks. A VPN establishes a tunnel for your data to go back and forth through and makes it more difficult to intercept.

The average business traveler or virtual employee might not know it’s a bad idea to check important business accounts – particularly those that contain financial and other sensitive information – on a public network, so make sure that you have a clear policy or procedures in place.

Protect Your Passwords

It’s highly recommended that you take advantage of two-factor authentication for any program that offers you the option.

Also, many experts believe that everyone should be using a password manager program that assigns random passwords for each of your logins. All you need to remember is your login for the password manager.

Protecting your password applies to ATMs as well when using the company credit card. Always cover the keypad when entering your PIN in case there are hidden cameras. Also, check for physical skimmers that may be placed over ATM equipment.

Trust Your Gut About Phishing Schemes

People create security flaws by clicking on things they shouldn’t. But many phishing attempts can be thwarted by training yourself and your employees, and by trusting your gut.

You will definitely want to read the rest of the post here.

Article written by
Catherine Morgan is the editor of Business Unplugged ™, an engaging speaker, and the founder of Point A to Point B Transitions Inc., a virtual provider of coaching services to individuals who are in business or career transition. Catherine is the author of the eBook Re-Launch You: Discovering Your Point B and Embracing Possibility. An experienced independent consultant and former employee of three of the former Big Five consulting firms, Catherine combines strategy development with accountability coaching. Her productivity tips and career transition advice have been featured on WGN AM 720 and WIND AM 560 The Answer in Chicago, and on WCHE AM 1520 in the Philadelphia area. Catherine speaks frequently on topics related to productivity, career transition, small business, and entrepreneurship. She doesn’t take herself seriously, but takes her subject matter very seriously.