Cybersecurity Tips For Small Businesses – Part II

5 additional security tips from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on how small businesses can improve their cyber security to protect themselves, their customers and their data from growing cyber threats. These – along with the 5 tips I wrote about a few days ago – will go a long way in making sure your business is a safe and secure place for your customers to shop.

Companies involved in finding and removing new malware and spyware, are pointing out that as these threats become more common and big businesses become more adept at protecting themselves, small businesses are more and more being targeted. So it’s becoming extremely important that you read and start implementing these security measures if you haven’t already done so.

Control physical access to your computers and network components
Prevent access or use of business computers by unauthorized individuals. Laptops can be particularly easy targets for theft, so make sure they are locked up and stored when unattended.

Secure your WiFi networks
If you have a WiFi network for your workplace, make sure it is secure and hidden. To hide your WiFi network, set up your wireless access point or router so it does not broadcast the network name, known as the Service Set Identifier (SSID). In addition, make sure to turn on the encryption so that passwords are required for access. Lastly, it is critical to change the administrative password that was on the device when it was first purchased.

Require individual user accounts for every employee
Set up a separate account for each individual and require that strong passwords are used for each account. Administrative privileges should only be given to trusted IT staff and key personnel.

Limit employee access to data and information, and limit authority to install software
Do not provide any one employee with access to all data systems. Employees should only be given access to the specific data systems that they need to perform their jobs, and should never be able to install any software without permission. (nd note: it should be never – no exceptions)

Regularly change passwords
Passwords that stay the same will, over time, be shared and become common knowledge to co-workers. This makes them easy to "hack". Passwords should be changed at least every three months. (nd note: this should be an enforced requirement!)

Now for some good news
CCS – as a full service integrator – has staff who can set up any or all security features for you if you want help.

Much of the FCC list consists of steps that are required by the major credit card processing companies. If you process credit cards and are not compliant with the processors’ security requirements, you are subject to large fines if your system is compromised.
 
More good news
CCS can also supply top-notch retail software that is PCI certified by the major processors. That software is called CounterPoint SQL. If you use CP SQL and keep its security features current, you’ll have one less worry from the hackers out there!

Talk to you soon  ~Norma

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