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No person or organization is safe from cyber security risks. In fact, it is nearly impossible to escape it in today’s world. Therefore, every individual and business owner should take proactive steps to build a safe and secure environment for their employees, associates, customers, and other users. A safe corporate environment reduces the risks that cyber criminals pose to a business. Below are a few smart ways to reduce information and data security risks to your computer systems.

1. Train Your Employees In Cyber Security

As bookkeeping is essential for financial recording, it is vital to set some time aside to educate your employees about cyber security, how to be smart online, and how to identify scams such as suspicious emails and websites.

2. Take Advantage Of Antivirus And Anti Spyware Software For Each Computer

Make sure that you have an updated version of a powerful antivirus software at all times on all of your computers and devices so that no device is infected with new viruses.

3. Avoid Skipping The Firewall

Firewalls are critical to keeping cyber criminals out of your devices. If you have more than five computers, to protect your overall network, it is good to get a network firewall.

4. Obtain Necessary Backup Copies Of Vital Data

In the absence of necessary data backups, you will be in a significant bind if you lose your organization’s valuable data and records because of a cyber breach. In fact, a minimum of one of your data backup sets needs to be kept off-site in a secure place so that only a few reliable and trusted individuals have access to them. Experts suggest locking up your critical business backup data.

5. Secure Your Wi-Fi Connections

Usually, Wi-Fi networks are easy ways for cyber criminals to obtain easy access to contents that are confidential. Thus, all of your Wi-Fi networks must be robust and complex enough to reduce your risk of this happening. Consequently, using special and numerical characters cannot harm, either.

6. Ensure Robust Control Over Access To Your Business Computers, Networks, And Other Devices

You’re bound to have seen the thriller movies where a cyber criminal fakes their identity and then attacks a server, stealing sensitive data by copying it onto a USB in a matter of minutes. Sure, that’s Hollywood for you. However, it happens in real life more than we’d like to admit. Thus, always make sure you know who is coming in and out of your company premises. In addition, do not permit individuals to play with your systems that contain important data files.

7. Create An Individual User Account For Each Employee

It makes sense to have every employee use their own individual official accounts to perform their jobs on your business computers. It ensures easier tracking of who is performing what activity online. This is a security measure that will be beneficial in many ways.

8. Keep A Password Policy In Your Organization

An easy tactic to safeguard your devices is to secure them with good passwords. A password policy will encourage all employees to change their account passwords quarterly and to create them so that they are difficult to guess. As mentioned earlier, it is imperative to build passwords using letters, numbers, and special characters simultaneously which makes it harder to crack the code. Consequently, passwords have to be easy to remember but hard to guess.

9. Limit Authority To Install Or Uninstall Software

Even if one of your employee’s user devices is compromised, a hacker would fail to download or delete software if you have limited authority. Only authorized staff members must be able to install software applications on your company’s devices in order to ensure a safe and secure environment.

10.  Leverage Cyber Liability Insurance

In case of a cyber breach or data hack on your business computers, cyber insurance will protect you from system failures, cyber extortion, and breaches. If your company heavily depends on its business computers, servers, and devices, or stores personal client information on them, it is a good idea to add a cyber policy to your company insurance plan.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.

 

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There is no denying the fact that small to mid-sized businesses are more vulnerable to cyber theft than are larger businesses. They are an easy target for cyber criminals as, often, these businesses have no IT department, simple networks, and are less likely to follow industry best practices to prevent their sensitive data from being stolen. This is causing US-based companies to lose billions of dollar each year, which is why the need for hiring top IT professionals for prevention of cyber fraud is becoming inevitable. Unarguably, a data breach can be costly to companies looking to expand their business operations in other IT domains. In short, cyber fraud is a curse that is kicking many multinationals out of the competitive race which is why companies need to come up with a sound theft prevention plan for achieving their intended business goals and ambitions.

 Cyber Fraud In Small Businesses

Prevention of cyber-fraud is critical to a company’s long-term success. The biggest dilemma is that many small business owners fall prey to the idea that their company is too small to be a playground for cyber criminals and mistakenly believe that their business won’t be a target. Regardless of the company’s size and scale, cyber attackers will exploit any opportunity at hand and steal sensitive information using sneaky tactics. They are smarter than you think and imagine and their hacking knowledge encourages them to get into this “so-called” profession and make the most out of it.

The age of digital evolution has brought vulnerabilities, strains, and repercussions. Along with it, cyber fraud is becoming much more common in today’s corporate setting. Generally, we hear news about multinational corporations that have been affected by malware infections, viruses, and other advanced persistent attacks costing billions of dollars each year. But, what about small businesses? Small business owners feel reluctant to accept the fact that cyber fraud can happen to them and they, too, can be under the radar of malicious cyber attacks.

What’s more?

According to a study conducted by one of the top IT firms in the US, as much as 63% of cyber criminals target small businesses. Cyber criminals are generally known to be magicians who know the art of stealing by skimming through online channels and networks. Therefore, small businesses need to change their approach and do something to prevent their sensitive information from leaking out of their company networks.

Why Are Small Businesses A Target For Cyber Criminals?

There are countless reasons why cyber attackers often target small businesses. Here are the top two reasons why small businesses are more vulnerable to cyber fraud.

No IT Department

Small businesses usually lack the resources to hire top IT professionals to secure their networks, devices, websites, servers and online operations. This is why they are more likely to face potential threats from cyber criminals every single minute of the hour. The biggest misconception about hiring IT professionals is that ‘they are expensive’. However, this is not the case. There are many IT professionals and start-up cyber security agencies that offer services at competitive rates. 

If you are doing it yourself, you need to update your servers and install the latest security software to take more control of the rising situation at hand.

Simple Network and Systems

Small businesses have simple network and systems compared to larger businesses. A small business generally lacks the room full of servers and network devices. Even if they have on, they are often outdated and non-operational. New networks and systems now have advanced security and layers of encryption that prevent leakage of information. Cyber criminals find it hard to break into advanced networks and systems which allow businesses to identify the intrusion and gives them time to secure their data.


Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.