Is your business’ network security up to the task?

By Courtney - 29 Oct, 2021
Security

Is your business’ network security up to the task?

Cyberattacks on the rise for all business sectors

Proactively managing your business’ network security is of critical importance. Why? Because internationally, there has been an increase in reported cyberattacks targeting businesses of all types and sizes. The Australian Cyber Security Centre states over 67,500 cybercrime reports were made online over the 2021-21 financial year.

Businesses need to be aware of a variety of different security threats, including:

  • Phishing campaigns and attacks
  • Unauthorised breaches or hacks resulting in the disclosure of personal data
  • Ransomware attacks
  • Denial-of-service attacks
  • Other cyber incidents that result in business disruptions.

Why your business network security matters

Each attack leaves your business vulnerable. There’s the risk of losing sensitive client and staff data, potential disruptions to business operations, and of course, reputational risk. There’s also the small but possible risk of malicious behaviour by staff, who might steal sensitive information for a range of purposes.

But while we might think of nefarious hackers being the biggest cybersecurity risk, the truth is that employee negligence and human error cause most data breaches. Some of the common poor security practices include:

  • Leaving computers unlocked and unattended
  • Writing passwords on pieces of paper and leaving them unsecured instead of a digital password manager
  • People falling victim to phishing attacks and unknowingly being tricked into providing data to criminals
  • A lack of knowledge about how to avoid a breach – and what to do if a mistake is made.

With businesses across the globe, including in Australia, needing to rapidly pivot to remote working models as part of the COVID-19 pandemic response, business cybersecurity is more in the spotlight than ever. As a result, the potential risk of a cyber-attack further disrupting the day to day operations of a business is very real.

What your business can do?

Some core foundations should be at the heart of every business’ cybersecurity practices. The non-negotiables are:

  • Across the board use of anti-virus and anti-malware solutions
  • Regular staff training sessions on security risks and how to respond, including:
    • Data breaches
    • Ransomware
  • Consistent habits for software configuration, updates and patch management
  • Rigorous password policies with non-dictionary words using a mix of lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers and symbols
  • Multi-factor authentication, especially for remote access to the business network
  • Tiered levels of access based on the minimum level of access people need to do their job.

What about BYOD and personal devices?

As well as managing business-owned devices and appropriate networking infrastructure, businesses need rigorous security policies to manage BYOD and other personal devices, such as phones and tablets. This is especially the case when staff are accessing the business’ network.

It’s also a good idea to have policies in place for staff about the use of business IT equipment offsite, especially if working from home as has become increasingly common over the past year. Staff should be provided with guidelines for the minimum expected standards for the security of their home network when connecting with a business-owned laptop, as well as rules about the use of business equipment by other family members.

Do you need help ensuring your business’ network security is fit for purpose?

Cybersecurity is a long-term commitment, needing sustainable practices to build it into your organisational culture.

Our team of technology specialists can help guide you through the process.

Ready to find out more? Contact us to find out more.

Author: Courtney