Your most valuable business asset may also be your most vulnerable. We are talking about your DATA, everything from credit card numbers to records and pricing information. They all need protection.
Many owners of internet businesses think they do need to be concerned about these issues. They usually outsource payment collection to a third party and trust that just because these companies have security software and encryption they don’t need to worry about security for themselves. This is absolutely false.
As many internet businesses are run from home, or at the very least have their beginnings in a home setting, security is of the utmost priority. Think about it. You are accessing and utilising the internet from your home computer. Yes, you may have anti-virus software running but this is not enough.
The largest component of internet security is common sense. You can solve the absolute majority of your security problems with very little effort by doing simple things. For digital data, a good bundle of security software that includes anti-virus, anti-spyware,firewalls and encryption is an absolute must. Though we tend to think of digital security, many small business owners forget about paper data. All home based business owners should invest in a paper shredder or in utilising a shredding service if your company produces a high volume of paper waste.
Many are also accessing their businesses remotely and laptops are of concern to those mobile entrepreneurs. Though biometrics, password protection and encryption can thwart laptop thieves, your laptop should never be out of your sight and one must always be aware of where one is using it. However, the best policy to adopt is to prevent sensitive material from ever being on the laptop in the first place. Leave sensitive data on the encrypted servers and never download it locally. Make sure all employees and anyone involved with your business is properly trained in the handling of sensitive, secure information.
The simplest solution to security problems is not to store it all. So before you store it ask yourself this question; “Do I really need it?” Often the answer is no and if this is the case, simply don’t store it!
When it comes to security, the savvy business owner knows that it is about more than protecting information. It is about protecting your business, it’s reputation and of course protecting your customers.