, ,

Tis the season to be IT Secure

Avoid the Grinch, Gremlins AND the Ghostbusters this Christmas

Did you know security risks double each year at Christmas? The primary reason is the hacker community know that you and your IT help are all about to go on holidays. They literally double their efforts to breach your security and have some fun while no one is home.

Take a few preparatory steps this week to reduce the chance that this happens to you and ease the pain if it does. And by ensuring the following three areas are clear you will be assured of a peaceful break.

The IT Grinch will steal your Christmas – don’t let him

Don’t let a major IT security issue steal your Christmas. Prepare ahead of time. Batten the hatches before you go away and be sure to return to work with all as you left it.

Two areas to check that will ensure your security is good to go are;

  1. Update your passwords
    1. Most security breaches are human in origin. Someone, somewhere has a password to get into your systems and they shouldn’t. This week why not update your passwords to key services and ensure only the people that should have access still do.
  2. Ensure you have back ups?
    1. Having a security breach is often not a question of if but when. And when it happens the next question is how long before we are back up and running.
    2. Ensure your website, databases, customer records and files are backed up off-premise.

Keep out the Gremlins – Whitelist friendly access

  • This means ONLY certain computers or devices are allowed to access your servers and network. In this way you can exclude and almost reduce to zero the chances of an unwelcome and unfriendly visitor.
  • If this is too hard, consider restricting admin or server rights to overseas traffic, just this will reduce the access to 99% of harmful efforts to access your systems.
    NOTE: Before you do be sure to check your network access is never routed via off shores services.

Know “Who ya gonna call” – not the Ghostbusters?

Now before everyone (including Elvis) leaves the building, have yourself a list drawn up of who you need to call inside or outside of your organisation in the event of an issue. In most businesses there are 3 to 4 key players who have the keys to most cabinets. You need to know how to reach them.

Simple advice is often the best

Now I know this advice is pretty basic, but every year we will get at least one client calling to get help on a system that we can’t get access to or can’t raise the people we need to help them get it fixed.

This year may not be your year to suffer at the hands of the Grinch, Ghostbusters or Gremlins – but if it you can send me my Christmas card thank you via this column!

Have a wonderful festive season, relax with your IT in good hands and we will see in the new year for more business marketing, technology and growth tips.

 

Mark Jones is managing director of Your Digital Solution.

If you have a question for Mark, email streetsmarts@yourdigitalsolution.com.au

As first published in Townsville Bulletin, November 12, 2016 12:00am – Used with permission.