What is computer security and why is it important?
Installing locks and alarm systems in offices is a no-brainer. However conventional security measures of this type only protect physical assets. Digital assets, such as networks and databases, require another type of security: Computer security. With the increasing number of cyber-attacks, computer security has become a critical factor for every modern company. Here’s everything you need to know.
What are the threats?
Cybersecurity threats have evolved considerably, posing a serious challenge to information technology security. Common threats include:
Ransomware. Hackers use ransomware to encrypt an entire device, network, or database. They then demand payment of a ransom to restore access.
Spyware. Malware that illegally collects internal business data is called spyware. It can remain on company devices for a long time without being detected, making it especially dangerous.
Phishing. Phishing occurs when hackers craft messages to steal sensitive information. An employee, for example, may receive a fake email asking for access credentials to an important company account.
The DDoS attack. A DDoS attack occurs when hackers flood a company’s servers with thousands of bots to overwhelm them and shut them down.
Cyber threats may differ in form, but they all inflict damage. A cyber attack can result in data seizure (in the case of ransomware), data breach, and disruption of company operations. At best, cyber attacks will result in minimal monetary losses. In the worst-case scenario, your business will be forced to close. That is why cybersecurity must be a priority.
Types of computer security
A company’s digital infrastructure consists of many different parts, which require several types of cybersecurity:
The good thing about the Internet is that it is accessible to everyone. But that also means it’s accessible to hackers. They can place malicious links, attack victims through unencrypted websites, or conduct DDoS attacks. The result can be stolen credentials, a data leak, or a website crash. To improve your company’s Internet security, use:
Data encryption. With encryption tools, sensitive data is encrypted with a special encryption key, making it inaccessible to outsiders. Using a VPN is one of the easiest ways to encrypt all Internet traffic.
Secure passwords. Strong passwords are essential to protect online accounts from cyberattacks. The NordPass Business Password Manager is an excellent tool for convenient account protection.
Endpoints are all devices connected to the same network. In a company, the endpoints are all employee laptops and mobile phones. Hackers can attack different endpoints to access the entire network. So the security of a company’s network depends entirely on how secure the endpoints are. Computer security services, such as antivirus software and a firewall, can help protect them.
Cloud computing has allowed companies to store, manage, and access data quickly and easily. It has eliminated the need for intermediaries when transferring data and has streamlined most business transactions.
However, the risks to data stored in the cloud are much greater than those of data stored conventionally, because cloud computing operates over the Internet (we have already discussed Internet security risks). Cloud security tries to overcome these threats by encrypting data and filtering traffic.
Businesses operate through many different applications. Whether it’s browsers, websites, or mobile apps, they all have vulnerabilities. The goal of application security is to protect all of this from intruders. To secure your web application, you should:
Use a secure hosting provider like Hostinger
Obtain an SSL certificate to encrypt all incoming and outgoing data on the website.
Use CAPTCHA to detect DDoS bots.
Although cybersecurity takes place in the digital world, it all comes down to people. In companies, “people” means employees. Cybersecurity should be a team effort with all members on board. To increase user awareness and security, educate employees on all cybersecurity threats and countermeasures. Encourage them to use cybersecurity tools responsibly and to report any suspicious activity.
What is information security risk management?
Information security risk management (ISRM) is an essential subset of cybersecurity risk management. Its primary objective is to guide organizations in identifying, managing, and mitigating potential threats to their valuable information assets. Considering the increasing prevalence of cyber threats and data breaches, the value of a well-structured ISRM strategy is high.
By adding another layer of defense, GISR helps create a resilient and secure IT infrastructure that can withstand evolving cyber threats. It’s more than just a technical process: it involves collaboration across multiple departments and stakeholders, reinforcing the idea that security is everyone’s responsibility. Ultimately, the goal of GISR is to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of a company’s data. It enables smooth operations, safeguards customer trust, and strengthens the company’s reputation in the long term.
Business IT Security
Enterprise cybersecurity is a comprehensive approach used throughout an enterprise to protect its critical information assets from cyber threats. By employing enterprise cybersecurity solutions, businesses effectively protect their digital infrastructure from malicious activity. This practice encompasses a series of measures, from robust security systems to customized IT solutions designed to defend against cyberattacks.
Additionally, enterprise risk management in cybersecurity plays a critical role in this strategy. It allows risks to be identified, evaluated, and prioritized, which can be addressed by applying appropriate countermeasures. This proactive approach ensures that the organization is well-prepared against potential cyber threats, thereby minimizing potential disruption or damage. NordPass helps large businesses stay secure.
A company’s ISRM process typically includes four key stages:
The first is to identify valuable assets and their associated risks. These can include everything from databases and software to hardware and intellectual property.
The second phase, risk assessment, prioritizes identified risks based on their potential impact and probability of occurrence.
The third phase, risk mitigation, involves the formulation and implementation of strategies aimed at reducing the impact of high-priority risks. This may involve preventive measures such as the implementation of firewalls or antivirus software, as well as incident response plans.
The final phase, evaluation, and maintenance, is a continuous process of monitoring and reviewing the effectiveness of risk management strategies. This ensures that strategies remain relevant and robust as business operations evolve and new threats emerge.
Computer security for small businesses
Small businesses, despite being an important part of the economy, often face a unique set of vulnerabilities when it comes to cybersecurity. A widespread misconception is that smaller organizations are less likely to be targeted by cyber threats. In reality, due to their limited resources and lack of strong cyber security measures, they often become an easy target for cybercriminals. This makes cybersecurity for small businesses a crucial issue to address.
Several threats specifically target small businesses. These include phishing attacks that attempt to trick employees into revealing sensitive information, ransomware that encrypts critical data and demands a ransom for its release, and data breaches that take advantage of poor security to steal customer data and companies.
Other threats include insider attacks, often inadvertent, resulting from poor security practices by employees, and DDoS attacks aimed at overwhelming and crashing company websites.
Given these vulnerabilities, small business cybersecurity is not an option, but a necessity. Here are the five best cybersecurity tips for small businesses:
Employee training: Educate employees about safe online practices and how to identify phishing emails or malicious links.
Regular backups: Take regular backups of critical data to recover from ransomware attacks or data loss situations.
Secure Authentication: Enforce strong password policies and consider multi-factor authentication for added security.
Update and patch: Keep all systems, programs, and applications up-to-date to fix security vulnerabilities.
Incident response plan: Develop a response plan to manage and minimize the impact of a cyberattack when it occurs.
For a complete guide to cybersecurity for small businesses, visit this page. Small businesses can no longer afford to overlook cybersecurity. By proactively addressing these vulnerabilities and implementing strong security measures, small businesses can safeguard their critical data and operations from a growing number of cyber threats.
Digitalization has brought many new opportunities to companies, but it has also expanded their attack surface to levels never seen before. Responsible companies must recognize the pros and cons of modern technology and act accordingly. The different types of cybersecurity mentioned play an integral role in the success of a company, so it is essential to apply them all.