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Protect Your Small Business: Cybersecurity Tips for Remote Work in 2023
The landscape of business has evolved dramatically, and in 2023, remote work has become the norm for many small businesses. While this shift offers flexibility and cost-saving benefits, it also opens the door to increased cybersecurity risks. As a small business with remote workers, it’s essential to prioritize cybersecurity to protect your data and operations. Here are some things to consider:
Embrace Zero Trust Security
Implement a Zero Trust Security model that assumes no one inside or outside your network can be trusted by default. This approach ensures continuous authentication and verification of all users and devices.
Keep Software and Systems Updated
Cybercriminals exploit known vulnerabilities in outdated software. Ensure all operating systems, applications, and security software are regularly updated to the latest versions to patch security holes.
Use Strong, Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
Require remote workers to use strong, unique passwords and enable MFA wherever possible. This extra layer of security is essential.
Educate Your Team
Invest in cybersecurity training for your remote workers. Teach them to recognize phishing attempts, suspicious links, and social engineering tactics that cybercriminals use to gain access to sensitive information.
Implement Endpoint Security
Utilize advanced endpoint security solutions that protect devices used for remote work. These tools can detect and respond to threats in real-time, even on remote devices.
Secure Wi-Fi Networks
Require remote workers to use secure Wi-Fi networks and to avoid public or unsecured networks when handling sensitive data. Consider providing a virtual private network (VPN) for added security.
Regularly Back Up Data
Critical business data should be regularly backed up to secure, offsite locations. In the event of a cyberattack or data loss, having up-to-date backups can be a lifesaver.
Develop an Incident Response Plan
Create a comprehensive incident response plan that outlines steps to take in case of a cybersecurity breach. Time is of the essence in mitigating damage during an attack.
Stay Informed About Emerging Threats
Stay informed about the latest cybersecurity trends and threats relevant to your industry to adapt your defenses accordingly.
Consider Cyber Insurance
Cyber insurance can provide financial protection in the event of a cyberattack. BOXX offers policies tailored to your small business’s needs.
Apple Users: Update Your Phones. Now.
For the second time in as many months Apple released urgent security updates for iPhones, iPads, Macs, Apple Watch, and Safari users to patch against three vulnerabilities that Apple says are being actively exploited. In early September, Citizen Lab discovered a new malware attack, fittingly named Blastpass. It uses Pegasus spyware from NSO Group to read a victim’s text messages, view their photos and eavesdrop on phone calls—all without any interaction from the victim. It basically blasts past a target’s defenses. Instead, phones are infected via Apple’s PassKit. The most recent vulnerabilities exploit a flaw in Webkit, the browser engine that powers Safari, to get broader access to the core of the operating system. This cyberattack utilizes Predator spyware that can steal the contents of a person’s phone when planted.
Many iPhone users operate under the false assumption that they’re not as vulnerable to bugs and cyberattacks as Android users. However, while Android users have the autonomy to lock down their own devices, Apple users rely on Apple. Basically, iPhone users MUST run every security update that Apple releases. Complacency will cost you. In addition to being vigilant about security updates, here are a few other ways to protect yourself:
Protect your passcode
Use Touch or Face ID when out in public and if you must type a passcode, cover your screen. Practice good password hygiene and make sure your password is difficult to guess. And while we’re on the topic, never store passwords on your device. Use a password manager to help you keep track, or even better…
Set up multi-factor authentication (MFA)
MFA combines different types of security items requiring users to provide complex pieces of evidence from various sources to confirm their identity. It’s superior to two-factor authentication that can rely on SMS text messages for confirmation—especially if your phone’s been stolen. If a criminal has your phone, that backup text can compromise you further.
Disable Lock Screen Notifications
The less you share, the more secure you are. Disabling notifications from appearing when your screen is locked, keeps potentially sensitive information safe from prying eyes.
Enable Find My iPhone and Activation Lock features
The Find My iPhone and Activation Lock features lock down your personal information if your phone is lost or stolen. This additional layer of protection requires your Apple ID and password to activate or disable your device. And you can track a thief or figure out which coffee shop bathroom you may have left it in.