We do love our devices. And what’s not to love? They let us do business on the fly. But with all the conveniences and technological excitement, there are cyber threats that every small business using these devices faces. So, as we move forward, there are steps you should take to keep your data and information safe.
Don’t Go Phishing
Phishing attacks attempt to lure you with malicious links and attachments. The screens are smaller, which makes it harder to recognize if the message is legitimate. So, everyone should examine them closely.
Some ways to alleviate risk is to give employees a company phone-they don’t have personal information and it’s less of a risk to share company data through a consumer app. You can also lock the device remotely and erase its data if it’s lost or stolen. And, it’s also easier to protect your info if an employee leaves.
Use Virtual Private Network (VPN) apps
Lastly, using virtual private network (VPN) apps is also recommended. Workers can more securely connect to your company’s network or cloud services over public Wi-Fi connections. Here’s what else you can do:
- Update all your software. As security holes are discovered, updates are released. So, make sure you’re staying current.
- Location features, while convenient, open workers’ devices up to risk. So only use them if necessary.
- Turn devices and accessories off when not in use. Bluetooth is an example of a great technology that’s better left off when not in use.
- Don’t use chargers that aren’t yours. Cables can be modified with microcomputers that grab information. Yes, really.
- If your device isn’t in your hands, keep it somewhere safe-like pockets or holsters. Losing your whole device makes getting your data simple.
- Apple’s “Find My iPhone” or similar offerings lets you lock, track, and erase devices. If you lose your device this can save your data.
- If you’re getting rid of a device, make sure you erase all documents and data to make sure they’re gone for the next user.
- Use complex passwords. The easier the password, the easier it is to guess the password. Also do not repeat passwords. Password managers like Dashlane, Sticky Password and others can help you remember them all.
- Use two-factor authentication. In addition to your password, you need to enter a code sent to your phone or email address.
- Get a security app like Avast or Bitdefender. They are like adding anti- virus, anti-spyware and a firewall to your computer.
- There are also the little things like better device passcodes (not 1234), turning off word/phrase auto-complete and clearing your browsing history. All can help in the event of an attack.
Devices and the technology they bring are something to be enjoyed and used to improve our businesses. They provide great convenience and help us get work done anytime and anywhere. But these devices require us to use them responsibly and to be aware of the potential dangers. Do your homework, take precautions, and enjoy the benefits of the latest technology.