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New Employee Cybersecurity Tips All Employees Should Follow
Cybersecurity is an important concept for all employees to prioritize. New hires are especially vulnerable. These tips ensure your new employees are prepared to prioritize cybersecurity.
Learn to Identify Suspicious Emails and Links
To prevent new employees from downloading harmful malware or viruses via email, train them to recognize suspicious emails and links.
Ensure the display name and header address match.
Right-click the links to verify their origin.
Avoid urgency and pressure to click malicious links or share sensitive information.
Protect Sensitive Information
The company’s and client’s sensitive information should not be stored in unencrypted files, including directly on the desktop or in a Word document or Excel sheet. Sticky notes or a Notes app are also not appropriate storage sites. Remind employees to lock flash drives in a cabinet when they’re not in use, too.
Use Solid Password Practices
Give employees clear instructions for their passwords. Ideally, employees should create a strong, unique password for every account and change it often. The best passwords are difficult to guess and contain a combination of letters, numbers and special characters.
Require Multi-factor Authentication
For added security, require a multi-factor authentication for logins to work-related files. This authentication can be a time-sensitive code, a smart token or fingerprints.
A clean desktop and mobile device supports security. Employees should remove unwanted apps and files and empty the recycling bin often.
Install Software Updates
Software updates can include security patches and reduce device vulnerabilities. Set devices to install updates immediately or instruct new employees on how to install these updates manually.
Maintain Antivirus and Malware Solutions
The antivirus and malware solutions your company uses protects all your devices. Clarify that employees should not remove or otherwise compromise these solutions on their devices
Back Up Work
Computer crashes, hardware destruction and virus infections can devastate work files and document. Prevent data loss when you show new hires what, how and when to back up their work on your company’s preferred Cloud storage solution.
Secure Personal Devices
If new employees can use their personal devices for work, establish guidelines for security. Separate files and other measures can protect work-related information in case the device is compromised, lost or stolen or the employee leaves the company.<
Report Cybersecurity Breaches and Threats
Employees must understand the chain of command they should follow when reporting any data breaches or cyber threats they encounter. Usually, they should report a concern immediately to their supervisor or IT professional.
Train new employees to protect your company’s data and maintain security. These tips improve cybersecurity and should be included in every new hire’s orientation.
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How To Use Geotagging Safely
A Global Positioning System (GPS) turns your smartphone into a mobile map, weather center and business locator.
The GPS also enables geotagging, a feature that reveals your location when you post status updates or share pictures on social media. While you may appreciate the benefits of geotagging, realize that it can be used in unsafe ways, too. Learn several ways to protect yourself as you utilize geotagging.
Benefits of Geotagging
Sharing your location can provide several personal and social benefits.
Access a full range of features on your smartphone, including bus routes, weather forecasts and navigation. Some related apps and phone features won’t work properly if you turn off geotagging.
Connect socially with friends and others, and invite them to join you during your adventures.
Share your travel, dining and other experiences with friends.
Promote your experiences with local businesses, historical sites and other destinations.
Add specific coordinates to your travel pictures so you can remember details about all your vacations.
Dangers of Geotagging
Sharing your location on social media can create potential dangers for you, your family and others. Before geotagging your posts, consider these dangers.
Anyone can see your current location, including strangers, unless you restrict access to friends only.
Tell criminals when you’re away from home, which could make your house and possessions an easy target for thieves or burglars.
Harm your reputation or a friend's reputation. For example, geotagging a friend in a bar could harm his reputation at work or with family members.
Put yourself and others in danger. A hacker can use geotagging information to find, stalk or harm you, your kids or friends.
Give criminals data they can use to reverse search your social media accounts and take over your accounts or steal your identity.
How to Protect Yourself When Geotagging
Because geotagging is a useful feature, you can take several steps as you use geotagging safely.
Turn off geotagging on your device. In most cases, you can find the location feature under Settings, but check your phone's owner’s manual for details.
Disable geotagging on specific social media sites.
Fine-tune geotagging and allow it to tag certain pictures or certain locations depending on who you are with or where you’re traveling.
Ask others not to geotag you.
Consider if the geotag could have negative consequences to someone’s reputation or privacy.
Purchase cyber insurance. It protects you if a criminal accesses your personal information, identity or phone.
Geotagging offers numerous benefits, but it’s also features potential dangers. Learn how to use it wisely as you keep yourself and your loved ones safe.
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Tips That Keep Your Company's E-commerce Site Secure
Your company’s e-commerce site is important for business. It’s vulnerable to cyber threats, though. In addition to purchasing cybersecurity insurance, use these tips to keep your e-commerce site secure and give your customers confidence as they shop.
Select a Secure E-commerce Platform
Your company could choose from dozens of e-commerce platforms but prioritize security. At the very minimum, your platform should use an object-oriented programming language and offer a secure checkout page, sitewide SSL security, two-factor login authentication, and login session timeout. Consider a platform that enforces strong passwords and includes a PCI-compliant payment processor, too.
Choose Safe and Secure Web Hosting
The best web hosting option for your e-commerce site will utilize an SSL certificate and backups. Secure web hosting will also limit downtime, which affects your customers’ experience and could make your site more vulnerable to hackers. Verify the available technical support, too, and ensure you have access to the help you need.
HTTPS indicates that the website is secure. It boosts customers’ confidence, and as a bonus, Google gives a higher ranking to sites with HTTPS.
Implement a Secure Checkout Connection
Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) authentication encrypts and protects data during checkout. It’s essential for a secure checkout.
Protect Against DDoS Protection
DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) occurs when hackers use bots to request data simultaneously, overload your website with traffic and crash your site. A DDoS mitigation service inspects all traffic first to verify the user is human. It works in the background to keep your e-commerce site secure and functioning properly.
Use Multiple Layers of Security
In the case of e-commerce security, redundancy is essential. Implement firewalls and place backups at every point of entry with backup for those backups. These layers reduce holes through which hackers can access your site.
Store the Minimum Amount of Information
Only store essential information and prevent hackers from accessing customer email addresses, billing info, and credit card numbers, expiration dates or verification numbers. Regularly purge outdated information and files, too.
Require Strong Passwords
In addition to the steps you take to secure your e-commerce site, require customers to do their part and use strong passwords. Require a minimum number of letters, numbers and special characters along with two-factor authentication for logins.
Set up System Alerts
Receive alerts when your e-commerce site is threatened by suspicious behavior. It can recognize transactions that originate from the same IP address, multiple orders placed by one person using different credit cards, and orders with unmatched recipient and credit card holder names.
Protect your company’s e-commerce site with these tips. They improve your cybersecurity as your customers shop.
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Cost Of Cyber Breaches For Businesses
A cyber breach occurs when someone gains access to information they should not have. In our age of digitization, all businesses face cyber attack risks that could halt operations temporarily or permanently.
Discover the cost of a cyber breach and ways you can protect your business.
Calculating the Cost of Cyber Breaches
The Wall Street Journal estimated that cyber crime in 2014 cost U.S. businesses $100 billion. That figure could top $2.1 trillion worldwide by 2019. Consider these nine common cyber breach costs.
1. Loss of Customers
- A 2016 study found that 76 percent of consumers would stop doing business with a company that suffered repeated data breaches.
2. Business Disruption
- Business process failure and lost employee productivity account for almost 40 percent of the total cyber attack costs. This figure does not account for lost ideas or blueprints. Additionally, your business could lose half of its annual revenue if a cyber attack occurs during the busy season.
3. Breached Client Records
- Lost or stolen records that contain sensitive or confidential information can cost a company more than $221 per record.
4. Notification Costs
- PCI, HIPAA and other regulations require your company to notify each individual whose information was affected by a cyber attack. The average notification costs in 2016 totalled $0.59 million.
5. Public Relations
- To repair your reputation, expect to spend significant time and financial resources preparing and distributing media resources, informing victims, employees and shareholders about ongoing breach repair efforts, and acquiring new customers.
6. Legal Costs
- Major retailers have paid as much as $10 million to settle class-action lawsuits filed by consumers. Your costs may not be that high, but you could face hefty legal fees in addition to your legal defense costs.
7. Regulatory Fines
- After a breach, your business could face fines from several regulatory agencies, including the Federal Trade Commission, Federal Communications Commission, Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard or Health and Human Services.
8. Identity Theft Repair and Monitoring
- The cost of identity theft repair and monitoring averages $10 per victim.
How to Reduce Cyber Attack Risk
Unfortunately, your business cannot protect itself 100 percent from a cyber breach. However, you can take steps to reduce your risk.
First, implement data loss prevention technologies, including encryption. Then train employees to protect information and systems. You should also prepare an incident response plan and team as well as a business continuity management plan. Purchase cyber insurance, too, since it can cover financial loss.
A cyber breach is expensive and could break your business. Contact your insurance agent for specific tips on how you can protect your company.
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