Like many other corporate processes, protecting your business requires effective planning and execution, along with good management. Every company must make security a top priority and commit to changes that work for the venture long-term. Sadly, not all entrepreneurs take security matters as seriously as they should. They assume that crooks only target larger corporations because of their much bigger bank accounts. This creates a false sense of security, which criminals are happy to exploit. With that in mind, here are ten security mistakes you must avoid.
Skipping Your Risk Assessments
Different businesses have different security requirements. You can’t adequately protect your company by operating under a blanket cover. By misplacing your security priorities, you will put your business at risk. Thankfully, preventing this is simple. All you have to do is conduct a risk assessment of your company and make a security plan that covers every important aspect of your venture. Make sure you carry out assessments regularly and update the plan when needed.
Leaving The Doors Unlocked
Most companies have more than one entrance and exit. When you fail to secure all of them, it exposes your venture to high risks. Anyone could gain access to your building, for whatever reason they wanted to. The fewer points of access your business leaves open, the less chance there is of an unauthorized individual getting inside. Because of this, you must keep all doors and windows secure, controlled, and equipped with the very best security equipment you can find.
Having No Screening Policy
We often assume that threats to our company come from an outside source. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Many thefts and date breaches come from staff within your business. This is why you must have a clear screening policy, which includes a thorough criminal background check, as well as references from past employers. When your business lacks the basic protection it needs to avoid employee theft, it can have a larger negative impact in the long run.
Skimping On Staff Training
While it would certainly help if they did, employees won’t show up at your door, knowing exactly how to do their jobs. Before that happens, you must teach them. When training new hires, it’s vital that you include security training. Whether you do this in person or using resources, like quizzes and online classes, your employees must know proper password hygiene, how to respond to security threats, and more. If they don’t, they will likely make their own security errors.
Allowing Access To Everything
An easy way to protect sensitive information is to limit the number of people that have access to it. The problem is, many businesses give admin privileges to employees based on their role in the company, rather than their need to access it. Even if your staff are trustworthy, you must restrict their access to files unless they need it. After all, while a phishing attack will give hackers control of an account, they can’t view any sensitive data unless that account has permission.
Putting Off Software Updates
Software updates can be incredibly inconvenient. However, ignoring those updates, whether it be for lack of time or fear of losing functionality, will put your company at risk. Crooks are constantly searching for vulnerabilities, so make sure there aren’t any to exploit. This network maintenance is one of the many IT services you could outsource to another company. By doing so, you could reduce overhead costs, as well as allow your IT staff to focus on driving your business forward.
Hiring The Wrong Company
When hiring security, you must make sure you do so with care. Although many businesses pick the first corporate security company they find, or, worse still, the cheapest, you must conduct research to find one that suits your needs. In an emergency, you will need professional help to lead the way and keep your venture safe. If you chose the wrong security company, you might regret it when this time comes. This is because you won’t get nearly as much help as you need.
Forgetting To Check IDs
Many businesses have ID requirements as part of their overall security policy. If this is the case for your company, you must make sure that those requirements are enforced. Failing to do so runs the risk of unauthorized individuals being granted access to the building. This could result in a data breach or theft. Everyone must have their ID cards checked when they enter the building, including management. Anyone that doesn’t have their pass should be told to go home and get it.
Sharing Those Email Passwords
Passwords exist for a reason. When you share your email password with a coworker, it undermines the purpose, putting sensitive data at risk. Because of this, you must instruct your employees to keep all of their passwords to themselves. You should also ask that they refrain from using default or weak passwords. All employee passwords must contain ten characters as a minimum, including lower and upper case letters, numbers, and special characters.
Chasing The Latest Trends
All organizations rely on security, so most keep a close eye on security developments and trends. However, that doesn’t mean that you should chase every trend in existence. Some of the most reliable security mechanisms, like key management and encryption, work the same way today as they have for years. You must realize that many security trends are based on a new integration of the same technology. If a mechanism sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Everyone makes mistakes, even entrepreneurs. However, there are some blunders you can’t afford to make. While there are many security measures you can adopt to protect your venture, new threats pop up all the time. Thankfully, when it comes to security matters, most companies affected by security breaches were being careless in one way or another. By correcting the common security errors and sealing up any loopholes, you can increase the security of your business and protect it from crooks for years to come.