Small Businesses Need to Know Safety First
There are numerous things that an individual has to consider before starting their own small business. Unfortunately, many people don’t think about the fact that they’re going to need some type of Internet security to protect themselves and their customers. Recent research has shown that over 70 percent of all company data breaches occurred at businesses with fewer than 100 employees. This makes it vital that every small business owner know the threat that they face and how to prevent it.
Internet Crimes against Small Businesses
The majority of Internet crimes committed against small businesses have the intent of dishonest financial gain. This can be done by gathering information on customers, employees or any one’s financial or personal information. There are several ways in which Internet criminals do this, and the following list is nowhere near exhaustive.
Trojans, Worms and Viruses
Trojans, worms and viruses are all malicious programs that hackers will attempt to get into a company’s network. Using these programs, a hacker can steal financial and personal information, see everything that employees are typing, access personnel files and even completely shut down company operations. These programs are excessively detrimental.
However, there are situations, where an employee of a small business can unknowingly be used by a criminal and cause damages to their company. In such cases, it is important to obtain the services of an attorney who has years of experience handling the defense of those charged with white collar crimes. According to the information on his website Steven Kellis, Attorney at Law believes, “Your best defense is an aggressive and experienced offense”.
Botnets are one of the most disastrous things that can happen to a company. This happens when a breach occurs in the company’s network and hackers are able to control all of the machines within the network. They’ll often do things like send spam emails from trusted company accounts in an effort to secure personal information from those in a company’s contact list.
Most individuals have run into these scams in the form of fake emails trying to elicit financial information. Small businesses, however, have had to deal with these scams for decades; even over the phone. “Phishers” will often contact companies and pretend to be someone who deserves access to information. Untrained employees will sometimes unwittingly give out personal or financial information to these criminals.
How Small Business can prevent Internet Crimes
Dangers faced by small businesses make it absolutely mandatory for certain security measures to be in place. Luckily, any small business owner can implement these strategies and end up saving money in the long run.
Strong Firewalls and Anti-virus Software
The first step to protecting company data is strong firewalls and anti-virus software. These will prevent most attacks from malicious programs such as worms, malware, viruses and Trojans. This is really the forefront of protection against external attacks, so failing to have strong and trusted programs in place is equivalent to rolling out the welcome mat for Internet criminals.
Although employees are sometimes the perpetrators of data breaches, they’re usually simply unwilling accomplices in network breaches performed by hackers. Training should be provided to all employees informing them of the dangers of opening unknown emails, downloading unknown files and even visiting social media sites from work. Proper employee training can go a long way in protecting a company’s assets.
While many small businesses who take appropriate safety precautions never need it, it’s not a bad idea to have cyber liability insurance. This will protect a company from huge liabilities if they ever experience a data breach. Since a large portion of data breaches are committed by wayward employees, it’s also not a bad idea to inquire as to everything that this insurance will cover.
It should be quite obvious that small businesses face danger on all fronts due to the advent of networking. Doing business wouldn’t be nearly as easy as it is today without networking, but this also comes with its own disadvantages. Computer savvy criminals now have the potential to access more company records than ever before, and because of this, it is absolutely essential that every small business owner take precautions to protect themselves and their clients.
Paralegal Kelly Kovacic is a former owner of a small business and she understands how important it is to protect your business from Internet crimes. However, there are cases where employees are used by criminals to destroy their own company. Steven Kellis, Attorney at Law has years of the necessary experience to challenge and disprove false evidence of the accused. This can make a critical difference in the quality of life for anyone charged with computer crimes.