Achieving the optimal level of cybersecurity for your organization requires a multi-tiered process that begins with utilizing a range of useful tools and methods that can be considered “preventative services.” These crucial security options make up a formidable first-line of defense against cybercriminals for your small business.
What Are Preventative Services?
These various services are designed to prevent security breaches, identity theft, and other destructive cyber events from occurring on your company’s network.
Along with other necessary defense measures such as a network firewall, updated antivirus/antimalware software, and attention to employee online behavior, these tools will provide a strong defense designed to prevent any access by hackers. A good image to think about when envisioning preventative services is that they form a key part of the wall and moat protecting the castle that represents your company’s network.
Essential Preventative Services
An experienced IT Support partner, such as Network Depot, will offer your small business a range of preventative services to help maintain a high level of cybersecurity. The essential preventative services your small company should strongly consider taking advantage of are described below.
Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)
This security measure requires any user accessing company resources to produce a secondary form of authentication. This method adds another level of protection and prevents hacking where passwords have been compromised.
The most common example of 2FA is when a user enters their password and then a text code is immediately sent to their cell phone or mobile device. The user must then input this one-time code, which is also time-sensitive, to gain access to their device, an online account, or a work network. Another example common in the business world and at government entities is a combination of the use of a FOB or security card with their password or fingerprints, etc.
Some high-security and/or compliance-dependent organizations utilize even more complicated multi-factor authentication (MFA), which requires three or more authentication factors. An example of MFA would be a user entering their password and then using a code along with a FOB or security card as well as fingerprints and possibly a retinal scan. In short, the more authentication factors needed to gain access to a system, the higher the level of security.
The negative side of these factor authentication measures is that it results in more time and inconvenience for the employee to securely access the organization’s network. These measures can also require that the employee and organization keep track of FOBs and security cards. However, most organizations are happy to make these tradeoffs when they result in a more secure network and workplace.
These tools store passwords in a secure encrypted hosted format that hackers can’t compromise. Along with keeping your password information and sensitive data secure, a password manager can be used to generate unique, strong passwords to ensure users aren’t reusing passwords across your network.
These services are helpful for most users who will have trouble both creating a strong password and also remembering it. This is especially the case for the typical user that has many different passwords for many different online or network accounts. An easy to remember password normally is not a strong password and is susceptible to being compromised by skilled hackers.
One disturbing piece of information that underlines the trouble users have remembering passwords and the vulnerabilities that exist for so many small companies: for the last decade the most commonly used passwords on the web are still “123456” and “password.” Cybercriminals, who already are turning their focus more toward less-protected small businesses, will be excited to encounter networks with unsafe passwords such as these.
For this reason, it is strongly recommended that your organization utilize a reliable password manager application. These tools offer users convenience and better security without the burden of creating or remembering difficult passwords.
Security Operations Center (SOC) Network Monitoring
This service provides 24×7 monitoring of your network and devices to detect hacker infiltration and intrusion. These powerful monitoring tools are constantly on alert and will detect all types of suspicious behavior on your network. They will promptly notify your company of any suspected intrusion attempts or malicious behavior.
These tools will continually scan your network and all your IT assets to determine if there are any current or potential vulnerabilities. These tools will also work to thwart cybercriminals before they can cause any significant damage by alerting you of their presence and limiting any exposure time.
The concept for utilizing all these preventative measures is simple: When it comes to cybersecurity, prevention is always going to be more effective and efficient than reaction. By installing and implementing these valuable tools as part of your robust, multi-tiered cyber defenses, you will help protect your company from the devastating impact of a cybersecurity incident.
Consult with Your IT Support Partner
The most important recommendation we can give any small business is to take the time to consult and work with a trusted IT Support partner, such as Network Depot, regarding preventative services as a key part of an optimal cybersecurity environment. Your IT partner will help you select, install, and implement the right preventative services for your unique business. With the assistance of a skilled IT partner, your organization will be able to rest easier knowing that you are well-protected against cybercriminals, and you will be able to keep your focus on carrying out your unique mission.