Cybersecurity Best Practices for Small Business

While some have returned to the office, many are still working from home—at least part of the time. Many small business owners have grown accustomed to the “work from anywhere” lifestyle. Remote work is here to stay, so what can you do to make sure you and your employees are safe from potential cyber threats?

1. Password Protect your WiFi

Your home WiFi network should always be password protected. Without a password, anyone can connect their devices to your home network, leaving you and your personal data vulnerable. The back of your router will usually have instructions for setting up a password for your network.

2. Enable Multifactor Authentication

Multifactor authentication, often called two-step verification, is a great way to stay secure. Usernames and passwords can be guessed, so to keep yourself safe, enable multifactor authentication on online accounts like your bank account and social media profiles. Instead of just a password, multifactor authentication will have you complete two actions to verify that it’s actually you attempting to log in. They may send a prompt to your cell phone or email a pin number for you to enter. Whatever method is used for verification, it’s usually simple but makes a big difference in keeping you secure.

3. Update your software

We’re all guilty of snoozing an alert sent to our phone or computer saying there’s an update available. But keeping your software up to date is critical in staying secure. Software updates contain more than just aesthetic upgrades and new features. They patch security flaws or holes that can leave your data vulnerable to hackers. By keeping your software up to date, you’re ensuring that your data is secure.

4. Stay alert for SMS and voice phishing

SMS and voice phishing scams are similar to email phishing. Scammers will text or call you with the goal of getting your personal information, like a social security number or credit card, or they’ll send you a link that installs malware on your device when you click. Avoid falling for these types of scams by staying alert. Don’t give out personal information and only use secure channels to contact a company’s support representatives.

5. Be on the lookout for phishing emails

91% of successful data breaches start with a phishing email. Hackers use phishing emails because they’re effective, so it’s important you understand how to identify a phishing email. When you receive an email, ask yourself a few questions. Am I expecting this email? Do I recognize this email address? When I hover over a link, where does it go? If you’re not 100% confident that the email is legitimate, it’s better to be cautious.


Written by Sarah Mailloux, Digital Marketing and eCommerce Specialist

Newsmakers for March 22Sarah has years of experience helping businesses start, pivot, and grow. She specializes in market research & design, international business, and business ideation/start-up. Sarah has managed the statewide digital marketing and eCommerce program for the network and presented over 30 workshops in digital marketing and website assistance. She also has 5+ years of Wealth Management & Business Reporting experience. Sarah is an entrepreneur herself, consulting universities and business through academic coaching, instructional design, and non-profit marketing. She has a BS and MS in International Business, is an Export Certified Advisor, an is a Certified Ideation & Commercialization Coach.