43% of cyberattacks are targeted at small businesses, and only 14% of them are prepared, according to a study from Accenture. This fact exasperates how unprepared companies are, and how badly their reputation and business are at risk.
Ideally, you should toughen up the cybersecurity aspects of your business, especially securing site traffic with an SSL certificate. In case, if you can’t loosen up your budget to increase security spending, consider options such as Cheap SSL from SSL2BUY, which can ease the cost burden while letting you prepare extensively to defend against cyberattacks.
In this article, we discuss some of the common mistakes that can compromise your security. These look simple on the surface, yet many commit them out of negligence or not giving enough attention to prevent loose ends.
Using Weak Passwords
It has become a cliché talking about using strong passwords. Yet many use repetitive passwords that contain traces of personal information such as date of birth, family names, etc. How often do you change your passwords? We know that using strong passwords is critical, but many of you can have a hard time doing so. You can use password managers to alleviate the time taken to manage your passwords.
Weak passwords are a gateway for cyberattacks to compromise your data. Attackers use techniques such as dictionary attacks, social engineering to break in. If you’re not following the best practices of setting up strong passwords, the best time to do so is right now. The following are some of the best practices you should follow, but not limited to:
- Avoid using short passwords and use lengthy passwords strings as much as possible.
- Do not use simple, everyday words.
- Do not use personal information such as pet names, date of birth, etc., in your passwords.
- Regularly check if your data and login info is exposed in other data breaches using tools like Firefox Monitor.
- Immediately change passwords if you find any of your login info is exposed and never use the exposed passwords on any other site or service.
- Change default passwords of software applications and devices used in your setup.
Not Training Employees
According to Microsoft Security Intelligence Report, phishing is a top cyber threat. In your business, new employees are frequent targets of phishing attacks. These attacks use similar-looking emails and sites to lure your employees and harvest critical information, such as usernames, passwords, etc. You should train your employees as early as possible on the cybersecurity practices they should follow.
Not Securing Your Website with SSL
Using an SSL certificate to secure your site’s traffic is irreplaceable. Visitors are aware and think twice about visiting an insecure site. It’s easy to exploit an insecure site and misuse confidential information. If you run an e-commerce operation, then not securing your site with an SSL is a blunder.
On the other hand, secured websites rank better and gain customer trust quickly. You can even use an extended validation SSL certificate for the bettertrust. Also, you should make sure that you have configured the SSL certificate properly and not dealt with any mixed content errors that may undermine the security and trust. If you’re looking for an affordable solution, you can get a cheap SSL from SSL2BUY.
Not Updating Software Components
In 2017, a global ransomware attack took place called the WannaCry attack. It used a flaw in Microsoft Windows systems to spread the malware. The incident affected more than 200,000 victims across 150 countries. But Microsoft had released a patch for this exploited vulnerability months before the attack took place.
The lesson is that not updating your software systems and components is a grave cybersecurity mistake you can commit. You should timely update software components such as web servers, operating systems, database systems, and firewalls, amongst others. Keep yourself updated with the latest happenings in the security world. Sometimes, researchers find vulnerabilities in software components and release patches to fix them. You should be quick enough to apply those patches to mitigate security risks.
You should backup your data continuously. Possibly use solutions like Continuous Data Protection Backups, which takes data backups as frequently as you require. Not only does it help you when there are any hardware failures or system crashes, but you can save yourself paying a hefty amount to criminals when they attack successfully with ransomware.
Ransomware, when successfully infects your servers and software systems, encrypts all the data available. The attacker can only unencrypt the encrypted data. It blocks you from accessing your data and performing business operations online. If you have had regular backups, you can become resilient to such attacks.
The cybersecurity mistakes mentioned above look simple, yet many businesses commit them. Or they don’t follow them with best practices. Defending your business against online threats is a continuous process. You should conduct security audits and tests against known attacks. It will reveal if you have any weak points.
Do note that sometimes it is not your software systems, but your employees, who will be targets of cybercriminals. Train regularly and remind them to follow your cybersecurity policies. Also, protect your site traffic with an SSL certificate. Test that you have configured it correctly and did not leave any loopholes for attackers to exploit.