Businesses are responsible for a lot of different things. This includes creating a good product or service, marketing it correctly, customer service and so much more. However, arguably the largest responsibility for a business is to protect sensitive and private information. Your company likely holds sensitive information about your own operation, but also about your customers.

With cybersecurity risks growing, it is more important than ever to get serious about protecting this information. There are many different ways to protect the data that your small business holds, and this article is going to look at a few of them. If you don’t already utilize the methods we mention in this blog post, you should start.

Have a Security Policy and Educate Employees

One of the most important things for a company to do is have a security policy in place. This policy should outline the rules employees are to abide by, and how sensitive information is kept and transferred. However, in addition to simply having a policy, you should be sure employees understand it. If not, the policy will have no use.

Employees should know what to do in certain situations, have good browsing etiquette and be trained on any security software or practices your company utilizes. Also, be sure to update the policy frequently as new cybersecurity risks for best practices are always materializing. While some companies are capable of training their own employees, there are also third party companies who offer training as well.

Utilize Backups

While data breaches and hacks are a common cause of data loss or leakage, they are far from the only cause. Things like power outages, natural disasters, machine failure, and many others can lead to data loss which could significantly impact your company in a negative way. Some data is completely unrecoverable, so it is better to be safe than sorry. Even if a computer is hacked, having backups will allow you to reinstall systems and software without losing everything in the process.

Because of these sometime random and unforeseen circumstances, it is a good idea to back up your data regularly. There are a few different ways you can back up your data and information. Some companies will manually back up data by using external hard drives, but it is often a better idea to automatically back up via the cloud. Some companies offer cloud backup solutions for small business use, which can make it easy and simple to frequently back up data.

Use Strong Passwords

This might be something many people deem obvious, but many people are still using weak passwords on their work accounts. Passwords like “12345” or “password” are unfortunately still being used in widespread fashion. Sure, they’re easy to remember, but also incredibly easy to guess. If you really want to protect the data that your small business has, you need to use strong passwords.

A strong password is one that is made up of numbers, letters, and symbols and is long enough to be secure. The password should also have no relation to you personally or the company at all. Also, be sure that passwords are changed on a regular basis, around every few months or so. If you find it hard to remember your password, keep a reminder in a safe place that no one else knows about.

Consider Access Control

While many would expect hacks to be the largest cause of data breaches, this isn’t actually the case. Believe it or not, it is actually a human error that is the prevailing cause of data breaches. As a result, it is important to monitor, manage and control who has access to your small business data.

You may choose to control access based on roles, seniority or use different levels of classifications to choose who can access what. The fewer people that have access to this private information, the lower the chance that one of them will be the cause of a leak or data breach.

Hopefully, this article has been able to help you learn some unique and helpful methods to protect your small business.

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George Meszaros is the editor and co-founder of Success Harbor where entrepreneurs learn about building successful companies. Success Harbor is dedicated to document the entrepreneurial journey through interviews, original research, and unique content. George Meszaros is also co-founder of Webene, a web design and digital marketing agency.