In the digital age, information is power. This is especially true for businesses that rely on data to make decisions, track performance, and streamline processes. Unfortunately, as our reliance on technology has increased, so has the threat of cybercrime. According to a report by Juniper Research, the cost of data breaches will reach $2.1 trillion by 2019.
With the high stakes, it’s more important than ever for businesses to prioritize digital security. Yet many companies are still falling behind in protecting their data. In this blog post, we’ll explore six of the most common causes of poor digital security in businesses.
Lack of Awareness
One of the most common causes of poor digital security is a lack of awareness among employees. In a study by Norton by Symantec, 38 percent of people said they would open an email from an unknown sender if it contained attachments, and 35 percent said they would click on a link from an unknown source. Meanwhile, nearly half of respondents said they weren’t concerned about the threat of cybercrime.
This lack of awareness can have disastrous consequences for businesses. After all, it only takes one click from one employee to give cybercriminals access to your company’s sensitive data. That’s why it’s so essential for businesses to educate their employees about cybersecurity risks and best practices.
Lack of Training
Related to the first point, another major cause of poor digital security is a lack of training among employees. Even if employees are aware of the risks posed by cybercriminals, they may not know how to protect themselves or their company against these threats.
According to a report by Palo Alto Networks, 60 percent of companies don’t provide cybersecurity training for their employees—and yet, nearly half of all data breaches are caused by human error. By investing in employee training, you can help reduce the risk of costly mistakes being made and ensure that your company’s data is appropriately protected.
Another major cause of poor digital security is outdated systems and software. As new cyber threats emerge, older systems may no longer be able to protect against them effectively—leaving your company’s data vulnerable. Additionally, more recent versions of software often offer enhancements and improvements that can make it more difficult for cybercriminals to access your data—so it’s essential to keep your systems up-to-date.
In addition to software updates, your electrical systems and network infrastructure may need to be updated to ensure they’re able to handle the demands of your business. In this case, you need to look for a commercial electrician company near you that offers commercial electrical services. They should be able to help you assess your needs and make recommendations for updates or upgrades to your system.
One seemingly small mistake that can have big consequences is using weak passwords—including using the same password for multiple accounts or using easily guessed words like “password” or “123456.” According to SplashData’s annual “Worst Passwords” list, these were two of the most popular passwords used in 2017.
When choosing passwords, it’s important to err on the side of caution. Use a mix of letters, numbers, and symbols, and make sure each password is unique. You may also want to consider using a password manager to help you keep track of all your passwords.
Unsecured WiFi Networks
Another major cause of poor digital security is unsecured WiFi networks—especially public networks like those found in coffee shops or airports. When using these networks, it’s essential to use a VPN (a virtual private network) to encrypt your data and prevent others from snooping on your activity. Even if you’re not using public WiFi, it’s essential to ensure your home or office network is appropriately secured with a strong password. By taking these precautions when connecting to any wireless network—public or private—, you can help protect your company’s data against possible attacks.
Failure to Back Up Data Regularly
One final cause of poor digital security is failing to back up data regularly. Backing up data helps ensure that you won’t lose all your critical information, even if your primary system fails or is breached by cybercriminals. There are various ways you can back up data, including cloud storage services, external hard drives, and USB flash drives. By regularly backing up your data in multiple locations, you can help protect yourself against costly losses if something happens to your primary system.
The bottom line
Cybersecurity should be a top priority for all businesses—yet many companies are still falling behind when it comes to protecting their data. By understanding some of the most common causes of poor digital security, you can take steps to improve the cybersecurity posture of your own business. From investing in employee training to backing up data regularly, there are several simple yet effective steps you can take to help protect your business against costly cyberattacks. By taking these steps, you can help ensure that your company’s sensitive data remains safe and secure.