A surprising bit of information was revealed in the Verizon 2011 Data Breach Investigations Report recently. It stated that organizations between 11 and 100 employees reported 436 data breaches last year, six times as many as companies with 101 to 1,000 employees.
What’s alarming is that small business owners that were surveyed believe they are not at risk. Lynn Laram, assistant vice-president of small commercial underwriting at The Hartford said “As cybercriminals set their sights on smaller firms, it is important for business owners to take proactive measures to protect data and minimize the likelihood of a breach.
There is no doubt that a data breach would compromise relationships with customers and hurt the bottom line of most businesses. Here are five easy steps small businesses can take to prevent such a breach:
- Restrict employee access to sensitive data
- Updating systems and software on a regular basis
- Use firewalls to control access and lock out hackers
- Use password protection and data encryption
- Shred and securely dispose of customer, patient or employee data
Besides having adequate backup policies in place, consult an IT specialist to insure proper protection of your systems