Cybersecurity for SMB – 9 Tips

Why is it important to invest in Cybersecurity for SMB customers?

Cybersecurity is important for Small and Medium Businesses with breaches happening regularly across businesses of all sizes & SMB customers are becoming soft targets for cybercriminals. They often find themselves in a situation where they do not have enough budgets to invest in advanced security solutions in spite of a recent spike in attacks on SMB customers. For most SMB customers, IT Security starts and ends with an Antivirus and a Firewall. That’s why it is important to focus on cybersecurity for SMBs. 

Cybersecurity for SMB

Main attacks targeting SMB include Ransomware, Business Email Compromise, RDP attacks, credentials takeover, and hacking of Servers and PABX. Following a basic checklist can make sure that SMB customers stay secure without getting caught by surprise. Given below are the main areas of cybersecurity for SMB customers that need focus :

Backup your Data Regularly

Malware attacks or accidental deletion by employees can put companies in awkward situations where important data goes missing. By regularly backing up you’ll ensure your business will be able to function not only in the event of a cyber attack but possibly through the impact of a fire, physical damage, or theft. It is also important to make sure that one copy of your organization’s data is available offline. The same shouldn’t be accessible from within the network as attacks like Ransomware encrypts data stored on connected devices like NAS drives. Having a good offline backup is the most important aspect of having good Cybersecurity for SMB. Companies should follow a 3-2-1 rule when configuring backups, which advocates having 3 different copies of data on 2 different media with one of them being off-site.

Strong Boundary Defense

Cybersecurity for SMBs starts with Firewalls. Firewalls are the entry point for an outsider to any corporate network. The Firewall needs to be hardened or configured with best practices to make sure that intruders are not allowed into the network. Deploying a Firewall with a proxy is a best practice that SMB customers should follow. It is also important to change the default password on your firewall when you install the same. 

Protection from Ransomware

Good antivirus software can help organizations to stay secure from new and emerging threats. However, Ransomware infections can be fatal to businesses as it encrypts the data stored on Servers and NAS devices and asks for a huge amount of money to be paid as ransom. This is why it is important to deploy Anti-Ransomware products like NeuShield that can also help organizations recover data from Ransomware attacks.

Email Phishing & Spoofing Protection

Email is the main entry point for the majority of malware that comes into your network. Emails contain links and attachments that could be malicious and the same needs to be removed before end-users receive the mails. Most SMB customers are victims of email impersonation & phishing attacks. Domains without proper SPF, DKIM & DMARC records make it easier for phishers and spammers to spoof emails. This happens because receivers cannot reliably separate and block fraudulent emails that mimic your domain. You need to implement the Sender policy framework(SPF), Domain keys identified mail(DKIM) & Domain-based message authentication reporting, and conformance(DMARC) to stop spoofers from using your domain. Solutions like Vircom modusCloud help SMB customers with Email Security.

Stay Patched

Hackers and malware look for vulnerabilities in your operating systems and applications to compromise the network. Patches are necessary to keep machines up-to-date, stable, and safe from malware and other threats. Applying these security patches at the right time will greatly reduce security breaches of various kinds. Patch management also helps with increased productivity. Often patches come with performance improvements for the products they apply to or fix crashes. It is important to patch operating systems and commonly used software on a regular basis.

Strong Passwords & Multi-factor Authentication

A strong password provides essential protection from financial fraud and identity theft. One of the most common ways that hackers get into systems is by guessing passwords. Simple and commonly used passwords enable intruders to easily gain access and control of a computing device. Brute-force attacks are quite effective against companies with obvious usernames and simple passwords. Hackers run automated programs that try different password combinations for a potential password. Organizations should enforce strong and complex passwords and the same should be changed every 120 days. Using a password manager helps organizations with managing passwords by generating and retrieving complex passwords, potentially storing such passwords in an encrypted database. Multifactor authentication makes sure that the right set of users only gets access to applications and systems that make it a key focus area when it comes to cybersecurity for SMB customers.

Insider Threat Management

Employees can pose a significant cybersecurity risk to the organization. This includes employees with a grudge, malicious actions such as leaving with a database, or human error. Sensitive Data should be protected so that employees do not misuse the same. An integrated Data Leakage Prevention solution that uses behavior analytics and employee monitoring can prevent data leakage and insider threats. It can give proactive warnings about probable data loss through notifications and alerts to identify and block the same.

Cybersecurity Training for employees

Employees are the weakest link when it comes to cybersecurity for SMB customers. Cybersecurity training helps employees to protect themselves and the company against cyber threats like phishing attacks. Training empowers employees with up-to-date knowledge on how to recognize and mitigate a cyber threat. With vigilant employees using strong passwords, flagging suspicious emails, and alerting supervisors about unusual communications or activity, the company itself becomes less vulnerable.

Try Managed Security Services

Recruiting people with proper IT Security knowledge is the biggest challenge faced by SMB customers. This coupled with the fact that the cybersecurity space is ever-changing makes it much more difficult for companies to survive an attack, whether it’s an intrusion, ransomware, or a simple DDoS attack. Managed Security services are a good solution for cybersecurity for SMB because they let you access a dedicated team that is ready to deal with all the cybersecurity problems that come your way, without having to create or hire an internal department. A service like WatchTower will monitor your network and security logs for incidents on a 24X7 basis to identify threats in the early stages before it gets out of control.