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How to Keep Your Business Cyber-Safe This Christmas

As businesses gear up for the festive season, so do cybercriminals. The holiday period sees a spike in cyber-attacks which can exploit the lower vigilance of businesses as they increase their online activity and potentially wind down their guard as Christmas approaches.

Cyber criminals will use a number of methods to exploit this, with these fallen angels using phishing emails and malware attacks amongst other tools to cash in at Christmas. However, by taking some basic security measures and ensuring they are being applied, you can both stop cyber criminals from swooping down your digital chimney and give your business the gift of accreditable security this Christmas! Our blog will tell all.

Simple Steps to Secure Your Devices

Businesses can take several straightforward steps to enhance their cyber security:

Educate Your Employees

Train your staff about the risks of phishing emails, how to identify them, and how to deal with them. Many best practices are available online; a managed IT services provider can also offer user awareness training sessions.

Update Software

Keep your systems and applications updated with the latest updates and security patches. You can use a patch management software to manage this more seamlessly.

Use Antivirus

A simple but relatively effective step to help keep your business secure is to install and implement antivirus solutions on your work devices. Alongside scanning your device for threats and removing them, many also offer browser security features as well.

Consider Network Security

A fundamental risk common to many businesses, are the risks inherent to their teams accessing your business’s network using personal devices, such as phones, laptops, and home-routers. These will be less secure and offer more vulnerabilities that can be exploited.

Take care to remind your team about the risks of using personal devices. You can also use a device management solution to better control the devices that have access to your network, as well as the permissions that they have.

Backup Data

Back up your data to secure locations where it can be restored and recovered swiftly if it is needed. This is important for ensuring continuity and making your business resilient against ransomware attacks in particular.

Use Strong Passwords

Encourage and ensure your users are using strong and unique passwords. You can use a password manager to make managing this easier.

The Business Benefits of Cyber Security Accreditations

A highly acclaimed cyber security certification framework in the UK is Cyber Essentials, which offers a practical cyber security foundation for businesses.

Launched in 2014, it offers a range of benefits, being a valuable form of social proof, useful for project bidding (especially for government contracts), minimising risks and damages from cyber threats, and even more benefits if it is attained with the help of a partner of the scheme.

With the world and business becoming more digital, so too has criminality. Not only is implementing the Cyber Essentials key controls an advantage, it will also become increasingly necessary as time goes on for businesses of all sizes.

Need A Hand with Cyber Security? Get In Touch with Our Specialist Team

Get in touch with Virtual IT today if you’d like support with securing your business and getting seamlessly certified with the Cyber Essentials scheme. We’ll be glad to help your business take the next steps forward and stay safe across and beyond the Christmas period.

Cyber Essentials vs Cyber Essentials Plus

There are two levels of certification in the Cyber Essentials scheme, with the key difference between them being how rigorously the five key controls are assessed.

  • Cyber Essentials: This is a self-assessment certification that verifies your business has implemented and documented fundamental cyber security measures.
  • Cyber Essentials Plus: This certification involves a hands-on verification undertaken by an external certifier, ensuring that a higher level of security is a reality in your business.

The Benefits of Cyber Essentials Certification with Virtual IT

There are a range of benefits for businesses when it comes to getting certified with the Cyber Essentials, and some extras if you undergo the process with Virtual IT. They include:

  • Social proof
  • Lower risks
  • Better bidding
  • Expert guidance throughout the process
  • Secure your reputation
  • Free cyber insurance coverage
  • Software that maintains compliance
  • Access to £100k in cyber warranty
  • Access to an award-winning specialist cyber incident response team

Give Your Business the Gift of Cyber Security This Christmas

As your business prepares for the holiday season, it’s crucial to not let cyber security take a back seat! By implementing the measures outlined in this piece and working towards Cyber Essentials accreditation, you can keep your business and customers safe this Christmas and enjoy the festive season with peace of mind.