How Can You Protect Your Information From a Security Hack?
Significant data attacks against Target, Facebook, the New York Times, Apple, and several other large corporations led to 2013 being named “the year of the data breach.” 2017 didn’t lag far behind, when over 1,200 security hacks occurred, nearly unseating 2013 for the same moniker. Experts expected that number to rise in 2018.
With the threat of compromised information increasing as technology becomes more engrained in our every day lives, it’s important to take all the steps necessary to ensure we’re doing our part in keeping our information safe. So what can you do to protect your information?
Your Information is Susceptible
While large businesses often have several resources at their fingertips, including specialized technology, advanced IT solutions, and securities dedicated to protecting consumer information, they can still fall victim to data breaches. Moreover, several large banks use mortgage spam that has put sensitive information of their consumers in danger, as seen in the case against Wells Fargo nearly outing a family in witness protection.
With the rise in e-commerce and increased digital opportunities to store customer information for repeated access, small businesses are obtaining customer information at a quick pace. However, they often lack some of the advanced security measures to prevent their theft.
What Can You Do to Protect Yourself?
There are several steps you can take to ensure you are keeping your information safe from a possible breach.
Ask a Business if They Encrypt Information.
Ask your bank, business or mortgage lender if they protection of all confidential client information in encrypted databases. This is the first step in protection. The following additional steps provide even further protection.
Request if a password-protected database is used
Password-protected your databases create an additional level of security, including multiple levels of password protection for additional security. A business should be able to share the additional measures of security, such as changing passwords frequently.
Limit Availability to Secure Information.
Reduce the number of employees with access to secured information and ensure those with access are subject to background checks.
Have Virus Protection/Firewalls.
Run malware detection on your servers and use firewalls to further secure workstations. Consider hiring a cybersecurity specialist to implement these safeguards.
Hire a cybersecurity specialist to educate staff, particularly those tasked with the handling of customer information, regarding precautions they should be taking to avoid breaches.
Secure Sensitive Information.
Keep your email address and personal bank accounts separate from your business affairs. Not only is this good practice in any case, but in the event of a breach of your personal information, you will keep your business identity and finances safe.
Strengthen Your Passwords.
Using the same password for your accounts across the board can be dangerous. Avoid using predictable passwords, such as birthdays, children’s birthdays or nicknames. Also avoid storing password information in a single digital space. This will help ensure that if your information is ever accessed, the damage won’t be as significant.
Steer Clear of Insecure Connections.
Be weary of using unsecured internet access. Hackers will sometimes use open wifi networks to access personal email, social media and even bank account information through these networks without users realizing it until much after. Play it safe and only use networks that require password or login information to access.
If you’ve been notified that your bank or other affiliate organization has suffered a data breach, take action. Reach out and request details of the breach. Many will send a letter or email confirming a breach in security but failing to mention details about what information was compromised. Knowing what type of personal information was accessed will help you monitor and protect yourself moving forward. Responding quickly can reduce the negative effects.
In the age of advanced technology its important to be aware of the potential dangers an information hack can have on you and your loved ones. Follow these tips to ensure your business is protecting its information from the threat of data breaches.