The modern commercial landscape is one characterized by the heavy use of, and dependence on, technology. Recent tech innovations have advanced commerce by leaps and bounds, and businesses and consumers like to benefit from this evolution. However, technology is complex, and that creates a few problems for businesses trying to keep up. Online interactions always present the possibility of a cyberattack, no matter how small, and businesses are often targeted by hackers. These cybersecurity tips can help you stay safe while doing business online.
In a technological landscape that consistently prioritizes a more convenient and interconnected work environment, there are more ways than ever for hackers to find a way to infiltrate your network. The benefits provided by tech like cloud computing and IoT are immense, so they can’t just be discarded, but the downsides need to be addressed, nonetheless. The zero trust style of cybersecurity is a step in the right direction, because it can be used to divide a connected workspace into smaller, more manageable segments that each have their own security protocols in place. Essentially, zero trust boils down to giving up the convenience of trusting networks and systems, instead choosing to verify each interaction individually to ensure that everything is above board.
Generally speaking, the verification of a user’s identity is one of the biggest problems in cybersecurity. Despite the seemingly tried and true nature of passwords, they remain woefully insufficient when compared to more recent alternatives like multi-factor authentication. Passwords are designed by users with being easy to remember in mind, and that can give hackers a short list of password generation techniques to resort to when trying to crack a given account, and social media can provide them with ways to fill in those blanks by allowing them to target specific users and to see their posts and social connections. Multi-factor authentication secures passwords by acting as a second identity verification step that will require the user to have access not only to their password, but also to their smartphone, and this small change deters the vast majority of cyberattacks in which a password is compromised.
Human error is often the cause of a cybersecurity breach, and that’s because hackers rely on the fact that people often don’t know the best practices of cybersecurity. To add to that, people just can’t really be on their guard at all times, so something will inevitably slip through the cracks, even among more informed users. For these reasons, it is essential that your staff is trained to interact with the internet in a safe way. The most essential things to understand are how to spot an unsecured website, as it's these that pose the majority of the risk associated with malware and data theft. It’s also important for your employees to know the tricks of the trade when it comes to tricking users into voluntarily downloading malware. It’s often easier to spot malware in disguise than the average person thinks, and knowing the signs will improve security immensely.
Much of cybersecurity takes the form of software, and there’s a very good reason for that. When simply mistakes do inevitably occur, software can help to minimize or eliminate the damage posed by a variety of cyberattack tools and techniques, more quickly and effectively than a human operator in most cases. This kind of software is inherently limited, because hackers are always innovating to outsmart cybersecurity specialists and developers, so you can’t lean on them too heavily.
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However, you also can’t expect total adherence to cybersecurity best practices, either, because “to err is human.” However, software does provide a number of solutions that can’t be adequately replicated by human beings, meaning that it will always have a place in cybersecurity. For example, intrusion detection and prevention software can help businesses deal with hackers when they infiltrate the network in much the same way that antimalware responds to malicious files. DDoS prevention, on the other hand, can help to prevent a type of cyberattack that is the result of several machines working in tandem in a way that human beings can’t hope to match.
Cybersecurity is a complicated field. Technology in and of itself is often complex, and hackers benefit from taking advantage of the limitations of the average person in dealing with that complexity. In order to build a comprehensive cybersecurity infrastructure, you’ll need to consult with an expert in the field. Since cybersecurity heavily relies on software, you’ll need an expert to guide you as to the strengths and limitations of each kind of software to reduce the number of backdoors available to hackers. The same cybersecurity professional or team can provide invaluable training to your staff to minimize the role of human error in potential security breaches, as well, and they can be instrumental in network traffic monitoring, which is one of the best tools for preventing a cyberattack before it occurs.