Data Dangers: 3 Lessons Business Owners Can Learn from Recent Breaches

Aug 18, 2021

Way back when, the biggest “data breach” concern was having physical files stolen from a musty basement or sophisticated safe. However, in the 21st century, just like everything else, data breaches have gone virtual. From small business owners to giant corporations, everyone needs to be prepared for the worst and hope for the best.

Here are three lessons all North Dakota businesses can learn from recent data breaches that made headlines.

  1. Close Off Endpoints

A big part of living online is access to smart technology. While these devices can streamline many parts of our lives, they also act as endpoints which makes them vulnerable to attack. Whether it’s a cell phone, HVAC system, or medical equipment, anything that connects to the network will have weak spots.

Sometimes it’s easy to pinpoint these vulnerabilities and close them off to attackers, but similar to a game of Whack-a-Mole, another opening will quickly appear for the taking. Many security and antivirus software can’t keep up with this pace and will inevitably miss security gaps.

The best solution to this issue is to have a strong network monitoring solution. When these types of software programs are installed on your business’s network, they can quickly identify users of suspicious changes in the network that need immediate attention.

  1. Train Employees in Cybersecurity

As most cybersecurity experts know, around 50% of data breaches are due to human error or negligence that allows hackers into a system. With everything from phishing emails to weak passwords as ways to gain entry into a network, with one click of a button, an employee can easily open the door for a major breach.

While business owners can’t expect all of their employees to become cybersecurity experts, it’s a good idea to provide basic training courses that show what the most common vulnerabilities are and how to avoid them.

For example, many training courses out there will offer educational guidance for workers and then create simulations to see if the employees retained the knowledge. Maybe it’s an occasional email that looks convincing and asks employees to click a link or an SMS to a business phone requesting a password reset. These tools help keep employees on their toes and can prevent the next major attack.

  1. Create a Disaster Recovery Plan

This lesson is especially true for small businesses, while larger enterprises will likely already have something in place that is worth reviewing regularly. A disaster recovery plan acts as a well-organized response if your business is attacked. A well-thought-out plan includes details like:

  • How to restore everything as it was before the attack
  • Image backups of the operating system
  • Timeframes for restoring servers

Many aspects of a disaster recovery plan can be stored on the cloud as data centers continue to be more secure and reliable. Doing this allows for a faster recovery and a less negative impact on your business.

Be Prepared

A data breach can cost a business millions and leave business owners with few options for moving forward. Thankfully, your business can take action to not be the next target, including getting in touch with SEAM. We can help your North Dakota business with computer/hard drive recycling and data destruction so that you don’t have to worry about your business’s details getting into the wrong hands.

SEAM provides IT recycling and data destruction services including onsite shredding and hard drive wiping to South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, and Nebraska.

Schedule a pickup or contact us for more information.