Symantec reported that 43 percent of cyber-attacks targeted small businesses that employed less than 250 employees. If you don’t want to be one of those small business owners suffering the consequences of a security breach that could cost you $36,000 to $50,000, then it is important to determine how well your IT company is working for you.
No IT company can guarantee that a business is 100 percent protected from cyberthreats. However, if you want to take the necessary precautions to help minimize risk in your business, you need to understand the importance of these four cybersecurity questions.
Consider the following four questions that you probably are not asking your IT company.
1. How Many Layers of Protection Do I Have Inside and Outside My Corporate Network?
Having a multi-faceted and strategic approach to securing your systems and network is highly important, if you want to protect your business both inside and outside your corporate network. A layered approach to security entails more than simply anti-virus software and having a firewall monitoring your network.
In addition to having anti-virus/anti-malware software installed on all computers and servers in your network, there are multiple layers you’ll need to perfect in order to safeguard against possible cyberattacks. Your IT company should be:
- Managing well-configured network firewalls
- Observing consistent, automatic software updates
- Providing 24/7 monitoring of all network connected devices
- Using comprehensive content filtering in the network
- Executing spam protection for all email accounts
- Organizing cybersecurity training for every employee
- Regularly using password management tools
2. Do You Actively Monitor for Security Threats That Hit My Network?
In addition to implementing optimized security tools, an effective IT company will consistently monitor your systems and network in order to be alerted in a timely fashion when a viable threat is identified. Such monitoring does not completely guarantee prevention of breaches. No IT security protocols are ever 100 percent guaranteed to stop cyberattacks. However, having the right plan in place will go a long way toward alleviating the threat and cost of the incident.
3. Do You Have a Plan if a Breach Were to Happen?
Security breaches are never completely preventable. However, the proactive business owner will align themselves with a practical IT company that knows how to implement highly structured plans that accomplish the following:
- “Stop the bleeding” if a security breach happens
- Isolate and eliminate the breach
- Restore data as quickly as possible
In addition to those aspects of IT protocols, the right plan will include the proper maintenance of backups, which ensures that the backups are proactively tested and ready at a moment’s notice, in the event of an emergency.
4. Will You Educate My Employees to Spot Phishing Attacks and Test Their Understanding?
The Ponemon Institute reported that phishing costs a 10,000-person company an average of $4 million annually. Human error is the number one vulnerability for a company’s cyber security. The more aware both employees and management are regarding the risks of phishing and how it can negatively impact a company, the more adept they will become in preventing cyberattacks. An effective IT consultant will create a plan for employee training on how to spot and avoid succumbing to the tricks hackers use to breach systems and networks. The right training plan will teach employees how to outsmart hackers and avoid falling prey to phishing emails, fake or sketchy websites, and other such tricks of the hacker trade. An ideal training program regularly evaluates training effectiveness not with “pen and paper” questionnaires, but with emails. Users will receive these unexpected emails periodically to ascertain if they will fall for real-life phishing scenarios.
Learn the pertinent questions to ask your IT company to ensure that you are getting maximum protection for your systems and network and invaluable technical support.