10 simple cybersecurity tips for smes
10 simple cybersecurity tips for smes

10 Simple Cybersecurity Tips for SMEs


You will agree that we are all gradually becoming more technologically inclined daily. The introduction of technology into almost all spheres of life has made it nearly impossible to accomplish a task without leveraging the internet. Due to the advent of digitalization, businesses have moved online, and most services are virtually delivered. Therefore, basic cybersecurity knowledge is highly beneficial to every individual, especially business owners. Cybersecurity is now everyone’s responsibility, as more online scams and fraudulent activities have been recorded in the past few years; Kaspersky security solution revealed that about 28 million cyber-attacks and 102 million detections of potentially unwanted programs were recorded as of August 2020. As a business owner, it is expedient to be aware of the internet activities around your business to avoid cyber threats and online fraud.

We have selected some simple tips to help keep your business safe from malicious online activities. By following the tips below and staying alert, you are doing your part to protect yourself, your business, and even your customers from identity theft.

Tip 1: Update your software regularly.

Installing software updates for your operating system and programs is essential. Always install the latest security updates for your device. You can achieve this by:

  • Switching on automatic updates for your operating system.
  • Using web browsers like Chrome or Firefox that get regular automatic security updates.
  • Ensuring updates of your browser plugins (Flash, Java, etc.)

Tip 2: Practice good password management.

We all have too many passwords, and we may easily use shortcuts like reusing the same password to avoid forgetting numerous passwords. A password manager can help you keep unique and secure passwords for all of your accounts. These programs can generate strong passwords, automatically enter your login information, and periodically prompt you to renew your password.

Tip 3: Switching to Biometrics could be good.

Biometrics has proven to be the most suitable means of identifying and authenticating individuals in a reliable and fast way through unique biological characteristics. Using your facial features or fingerprint as passcodes to your devices increases security. Passwords are easy to steal, but faking biometrics is much more difficult. This keeps fraudsters out of your system and gives you an edge over cyber thefts.

Tip 4Be careful when clicking links, especially from unknown sources.

Avoid visiting unknown websites or downloading software from unreliable sources. These sites often host malware that automatically (often invisibly) installs and compromises your computer. Also, try not to click on links in unsolicited or suspicious emails for any reason.

Tip 5: Ensure Safe use of mobile devices.

Considering how dependent we are on mobile devices and how vulnerable they are to attacks, you’ll want to make sure you’re protected by engaging in the following:

  • — LOCK your device with a PIN or password, and never leave your device unsecured in public.
  • Only install apps from trusted sources (Apple AppStore, Google Play)
  • Keep your device’s operating system up to date.
  • Don’t click on links or attachments in unsolicited emails or text messages.
  • Avoid transferring or storing a core of personal information on your device.

Tip 6: Install antivirus/anti-malware protection.

Only install these programs from a known and trusted source. Keep virus definitions, engines, and software up-to-date to ensure your programs remain effective.

Tip 7: Do not use a public Wi-Fi network you are not sure of without a VPN.

Do not use a public Wi-Fi network without a virtual private network (VPN). Using a VPN, traffic between your device and the VPN server is encrypted. This means cybercriminals encounter much more difficulty accessing your data on your device. Use your mobile network if you don’t have a VPN when security is essential.

Tip 8: Learn about phishing; be highly suspicious of emails, phone calls, and promotional materials.

In phishing scams, an attacker impersonates someone or something that the sender is not to trick recipients into disclosing credentials, clicking a malicious link, or opening an attachment that infects the user’s system with malware, Trojan horses, or zero-day exploits. This often leads to a ransomware attack. 90% of ransomware attacks are due to phishing attempts. Here are some essential cybersecurity tips to keep in mind about phishing schemes:

  • Do not open emails from people you don’t know.
  • Know which links are safe — hover your mouse over a link to see where it leads. In general — see where they come from and if there are grammatical errors. Malicious links can come from friends who have been infected, too, so be very careful!

Tip 9: Use two-factor or multi-factor authentication if available.

Two-factor or multi-factor authentication is a service that adds additional layers of security to the standard password-based network authentication method. Without two-factor authentication, you usually enter your username and password. However, when using two-factor authentication, you will be prompted to enter an additional authentication method, such as a personal identification code, another password, or even a fingerprint. After entering your username and password with multi-factor authentication, you will be prompted for more than two additional authentication methods.

Tip 10: Practice Customer(s) Verification / KYC

Any business with an online presence is widely accessible to both real customers and imposters. One of the potent ways to differentiate between these two is by integrating identity verification. Integrating with an identity verification platform such as Identitypass will secure your business against online fraud and ultimately maintain or improve your brand’s reputation.

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