In contrast to what we perceived as a passing cloud for the world businesses, the pandemic has done worse. Not only us but also the safety of our data is under a grievous threat. And that raises the red flag on our understanding of data security, again. Data encryption is meant for all and must be embraced to its fullest potential.
Get it straight – a password isn’t enough anymore to safeguard devices. Accessing your laptop is as easy as removing the hard drive and using it in another system. And since most of us are not working on the encrypted devices at offices, security risks are at an all-time high. After all, world users forced to work from home on personal devices has been a dream of every hacker. COVID-19 just actualized it for them.
For those who just woke up to the extremity of the situation, here’s a quick run through the top practices to protect your online business.
1) First things first – Switch to HTTPS
As the user data is exchanged between the website and the webserver, HTTPS that is HTTP with the SSL certificate provides an added layer of encryption to prevent unauthorized access attempts. The communication protocol is by far the most trusted mechanism to limit your website’s data exposure while not missing out on any of your target geographies.
Websites enabled with the HyperText Transport Protocol Secure can be easily identified with a green badge. Moreover, search engine algorithms are biased towards such products and that shows in their SEO rankings. Going forward, not only will your HTTPS-enabled website be secure but will also perform better than peers.
2) Provide your Employees Email Best Practices
There could be more email ids than mobile numbers or even bank account holders in the world. There are no doubts about the millions of businesses driving seamless communications through emails as the numbers could mount to 4.3 billion in 2023. However, too much exposure leaves your enterprise data unguarded and emails are no less vulnerable. Despite aggressive awareness campaigning against the cybercrime method, 88% of businesses complained against spear-phishing attacks.
And this happened because small organizations still don’t use private business email suite services. Personal email accounts are always tempting for hackers as the chances of opening an attachment are higher leading to phishing scams and ransomware attacks.
Whether full time or contractual, always follow email best practices for all your employees. Guide them not to subscribe to any public services through their business email. A simple yet highly effective step.
3) Choose an enterprise-grade VPN
Public Wi-Fi networks are not safe and your business data is under direct threat. Although most users would counter-argue with using a VPN connection, what they don’t realize is that not all VPN tools are safe. Most of the options available out there provide basic functionalities. While they do a fair job at masking your IP and preventing attacks in a public Wi-Fi network, these tools lack user-friendly policies and often end up using the user data for commercial use. Exactly why they are either free or extremely cheap.
Choosing the right VPN should be on your list of to-dos for securing an online business. Since most offices aren’t working and people are exploring alternatives to home offices at cafes, co-working spaces etc. getting an enterprise-grade VPN app is imperative. What’s needed is a reliable tool that doesn’t obstruct you with unnecessary advertisements.
Consider Switcherry, a VPN tool for iOS users that have completely parted ways from advertisements. To empower remote employees to work seamlessly, Switcherry offers high customizable subscription management. The app allows up to 5 devices on every subscription so that configuration is fast and easy. Since most VPN tools restrict daily traffic consumption, Switcherry comes with limitless plans. Thereby, encouraging users to experience a workspace grade internet service, anytime and anywhere.
4) Enable 2 Factor Authentication throughout the system
Passwords haven’t outmoded. But 81% of access breaches due to stolen passwords are a matter of concern.
While passwords still top the priority stack of access security, the backing of a multifactor authentication protocol further fortifies them. More popular as the 2-F-A, (Two Factor Authentication), this is an effective step to combat brute force attacks. Consider the use case of accessing your online banking portal. After you have logged in your credentials, additional validation through OTP on mobile is a type of multifactor authentication. If a financial institution holding extremely confidential data operates on 2-F-A, so should you.
In some cases, more than 2 steps can also be used to validate a login attempt. For example, multiple OTPs sent on the mobile and the email-id. Besides ease of access, security is the most important takeaway.
5) Learnings from Lockdown – Resurrect your data security practices
Get over the grumbling and utilize this as an opportunity to value data encryption. Going forward, users of all types need to review their devices and networks. Don’t defer any further, there’s enough help available to help you protect your online business.