When you run a business private information comes across your desk all the time. You might have banking information, employee identity information or other sensitive material. In the days before the internet, protecting that kind of data was simple. All you had to do was keep your filing cabinet locked and make sure that you flipped over sensitive paperwork before meeting with a client.

With the advent of cloud computing and online business, information security has gotten more complex. Here are four tactics to protect the information security of your business, it’s clients, and employees.

Keep software updated

When a new software is released, hackers immediately start looking for ways to break into the system and steal information. In response, software companies continuously release new updates that address security threats.  Out-of-date software is like an open door for hackers. By keeping your software up to date, you close and lock that door.

As software as a service becomes more common, software companies are integrating automatic updates. If you’ve paid for an SaaS solution, your software will be updated when needed. For traditional software, you’ll likely get notifications on your computer asking for permission to install updates as they are released. It can seem like a disruption to stop what you’re doing and update your software, but it will save you a lot of time and headache in the long run.

Don’t give it away

Scammers contact you with emails and phone calls to trick you into giving them access to your business computers. They might send an email that looks like it comes from your bank, or call your place of business pretending to be a reputable company like Microsoft or Google. Their goal is to get access to your data. If you allow them into your computer by clicking a link, or provide them with account information over the phone, you’ve essentially given away the keys to your information security.

Every employee should get regular training on how to spot and avoid scam attempts. A little extra training now, can save time and money in the long run.

Create regular backups

Although theft of data is a major threat to your information security, there’s another threat that doesn’t get talked about as often — loss of data. An employee may accidentally delete an important spreadsheet. A hard drive may crash, rendering the data on it impossible to access. You might be struck by a Ransomware virus that encrypts all of your data unless you pay a fee. These are all real scenarios our clients have faced.

Protect against all of these threats by performing regular backups of your data. How often you back up depends on how much your data changes over time. Consider how difficult it would be to reconstruct a day worth of data, a week, a month, and create a backup schedule that gives you the level of protection you need.

Have a information security disaster plan

No matter how well you safeguard your information, there is always a risk that hackers or other bad actors could get through your defenses. You should have a information security disaster plan in place so you know what to do when a data breach happens. Quickly setting your plan in motion will minimize the effect of the breach while also helping your customers feel more secure.

For help creating an information security disaster plan, contact Technology Solutions Inc. Ron can assess your risk factors to create the plan that’s right for your business.