You own a successful small business. Your customers trust you, your company, and your products. Trusting your business also means your customers trust you to protect their confidential data. But sometimes, businesses neglect protecting this data. Here are four things you can do to protect your customer’s data.
The first step is to hire a dedicated IT support team. Their job is to ensure that your computer network is up to date and secure at all times. If your company is too small, you can have an IT support company do a complete audit of your system. They will analyze your security and recommend the steps you should take to protect your small business’s confidential data.
This assessment should be done periodically. Computer software will need to be kept up to date because new threats are discovered every day. Passwords should be changed regularly for anyone that has access to confidential data.
Having the best antivirus software, firewalls, and encryption might not be enough to protect your important data. Ransomware can still get through, and computers can still crash. Losing your confidential data can set your company back years, and you could lose your customer’s trust that you worked so hard to earn.
Backing up this data should be done on a strict schedule. it is easily overlooked or put off for another day, but you need to avoid that temptation. Having this done daily or weekly will ensure you will not lose this important data.
For an added layer of security, you can encrypt all of your data. Wherever you have client data stored, transmitted, or accessed should be protected by an encryption method. This might sound like overdoing security, especially for small businesses, but you will be thankful that you did encrypt this data if someone should break into your system.
Maybe you already have encrypted stored files, but what about other points of access? Employees and contractors might be using their smartphones or laptops to access data. This information should also be encrypted.
You can have all types of security in place, but if your employees don’t know how to use it or when to use it, it might not help. Have your IT support team conduct classes for all employees on the use of these data protection methods. These classes should include hands-on instructions and videos. They should also be required for all new employees as soon as they are hired.
It only takes one mistake to lose all of your confidential data. By taking these four steps, you can better protect your important data and keep your business secure from hackers.
Anita is a freelance writer from Denver, CO. She studied at Colorado State University, and now writes articles about about health, business, family and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family whenever she isn’t writing.