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Just how safe are your systems?

As IT systems have become the hub of day-to-day operating processes for all businesses, any disruption or delay to accessing key data can prove to be very expensive.

The overall costs can manifest themselves in a range of problems. These include lost productivity due to systems failures, reduction in customer service, potentially lost orders and overtime to recover data, along with all IT recovery costs.

With data recovery costs ranging from £500-£1,200 per day (depending on the failure), it’s a cost that businesses of any size can ill afford.

That's why we are here to help. 

Security is not solely about preventing unauthorised access to data. Security is equally about ensuring the data is continuously available. For example, in the event of a hardware failure, data can be easily restored from either a physical backup or an online cloud backup that is based in a data centre within the United Kingdom.

The first step is to find an IT provider with whom you can build a ‘trusted relationship’. After all, IT is becoming more complex than ever. The advice from experts who spend every day working supporting clients with IT security solutions is reassuring and, in the long-term, the overall best value.

An initial risk assessment is a useful method of identifying any potential cyber issues. This could be a single computer that connects over the Internet to your office servers. Or, you may have multiple issues to consider if you work in a multi-office environment that requires access to all types of data and software.

It's Happening and it’s Occurring Now!

Cyber criminals are looking to target your computers and infrastructure for financial gain.

“The rate of growth of cyber threats has been exponential — a seven-fold increase in the last two years.” - Kumar Parakala, Global Digital Leader, GHD Digital.

There are several steps that should be considered as standard:

  • Passwords should be at least 10 characters—the more characters and symbols the better. They should also be changed on a regularly basis.
  • Antivirus and anti-ransomware software - this protects your users and data with anti-exploit, anti-ransomware, as these are the advanced threats in today’s environment. If hackers gain access to your network, they could lock your data files up so that you will not be able to access them. If you do not have any form of a backup, they will then demand thousands of pounds in payment. Do not be held to ransom; make sure you have the correct software and a controlled backup.
  • Firewall - This protects your IT network from unauthorised access across an open internet connection when using email and accessing web sites. Special attention should be paid to controlling users’ access to websites, and the downloading of any data and software as these all pose a major risk to your network. These can all be controlled with the correct firewall and software.
  • Software Updates - The most important reason to keep all your IT software up to date is security. There are flaws with any software systems — and it is just a matter of time before the hackers discover them, so regular updates must occur.
  • Access rights - Group users according to their rights of access to data and programs, and structure data directories to ensure confidentially by hiding sensitive data.
  • Remote Access to the office - Always use a virtual private network (VPN) and two factor logon software. This protects your access from home to the server and your email.
  • Old Staff user accounts - Hackers can gain access to a network by creating backdoors on compromised systems. This is accomplished by searching for vulnerabilities in the network, such as unused accounts that have easy-to-decipher passwords. Once the intruder is in, they will change the password to a different password that is difficult to break. So, remove all old user accounts.
  • Disaster Recovery Plan - All businesses should have an IT full Disaster Recovery plan; this should be tested at least twice a year, and any issues should be addressed.
  • Insurance - IT disasters can and do happen, and if you are not adequately insured, it could leave you in financial ruin. Please consult your insurance broker and make sure you are fully covered.
  • HM Government Cyber Essential - Cyber Essentials will guard against the most common cyber threats and demonstrate your commitment to cyber security. To find out more visit, www.ncsc.gov.uk

Summary

Few businesses spend enough time on cyber and data security. They tend to wait until something goes wrong. On the basis that prevention is always better than cure, it is always best to have a cyber risk assessment to help safeguard one of your most important assets - your data.

Speak to an expert

For more expert Cyber advice please call one of our consultants on (01245) 403353 or email us at admin@seabrookdev.com