The Government last night put out a warning that Cybercriminals are seeking to exploit the Coronavirus pandemic by targeting individuals, businesses and institutions. Covid-19 is presenting businesses with unprecedented challenges, but as we tackle this crisis it is essential that we don’t leave ourselves open to malicious activity. The crisis has created a breeding ground for criminals to take advantage of our anxieties during this time. Every day cyber criminals are attacking UK businesses. Google announced this week that they have blocked 18m scam emails every day. It is critical now more than ever that we make sure our businesses are protected.
In response to the Governments warning, Pulse Cashflow have announced six simple steps that we believe businesses should take now to protect themselves by implementing effective security measures.
- Install anti-virus software on all of your devices including phones and tablets. Remember that paid versions of anti-virus software will offer greater protection than free versions.
- Use secure passwords. Don’t reuse passwords, give each of your accounts a different password and update them regularly. Investigate a secure password management system to keep track of your passwords and which allow shared logins with employees without revealing passwords.
- Keep your software up to date. When prompted to update software by your system – do it now. Don’t leave it as it may contain important security updates.
- Train your employees. One of the biggest risks to business is an employee acting on a fraudulent email, text or online message. Train them to spot them and most importantly to follow best practices.
- Back-up your data. Keeping your business going in the event of an attack is critical. Back-ups allow you to restore all data quickly and easily.
- Consider outsourcing cybersecurity – if you don’t know where to start or are unsure of whether you have the right protection in place consider outsourcing. There are many IT companies specialising in helping small businesses improve their security.
Cybercriminals know that larger businesses have the resources in place and therefore target smaller businesses. Don’t get caught out, review your security measures and make sure your business is protected.