Can you be trusted to protect customer data?
Protecting customer data is one of the most important ways to convert and retain your clients. Customers value trust. They have to trust businesses every day with their identity and financial details. So customers expect their data is safe with you. If your business loses that trust through poor cybersecurity, you’re losing more than just your information, you’re losing customers.
Protecting customer data is an investment
Companies such as Telstra, Amazon and Qantas, have a high level of trust when it comes to online transactions. Even though no company is immune from a cyberattack, they invest in cybersecurity to protect the loyalty and trust of their customers.
Last year Telstra commissioned a security report on Australian businesses. They found 19 per cent of businesses estimated over half of their data breaches were undetected in the past year, even though 74 per cent believed they had systems in place to detect breaches.
Even more concerning was that over half of the businesses that reported a ransomware attack paid the ransom and most didn’t get their data back.
How can you protect customer data from a cyber attack?
A security audit can determine the level of threat to your business and how it can be minimalised. Once you know your systems’ vulnerabilities, protecting your data and having strategies in place may prevent a data breach.
In 2017 the government introduced the Essential Eight, which are eight strategies to prevent, limit and recover from a cyberattack on business.
Preventing a data breach
Block unknown programs from your system. Only allow approved programs to execute on your servers, data hubs, workstations and network.
Also, make sure you install the latest versions of any software or applications that are used by clients or employees of your business. Software updates help protect your data and hardware as they contain ‘patches’ which update any security features.
Block macros embedded in Microsoft documents from unverified sources, especially online locations. Microsoft Office macros could be used to deliver malware and run malicious code on your system.
Attackers may use flash content, Java function and popup ads to deliver malware and execute unwanted programs, particularly on web browser and MS Office packages. So it’s best to disable them.
Secure any access points to your system with passwords and user verification
Restrict administration accounts to only those who need it. Also, don’t use email or search the web through this account.
Multi-factor authentication is when an employee may access an account and then have to verify their identity by a pin that has been sent via SMS.
Make sure that all operating systems are running the latest version of the software which includes patches, which are security updates.
If you do suffer a data breach, a disaster or system failure, you need to be prepared. Regularly back up your data to reduce downtime if the unimaginable occurs.
The need to protect customer data has never been so important. Businesses need to stay on top of their security as customers trust us with their identity, finances and other personal information.
How safe is your customer data?
Ask Synergy IT Consulting for a free Security Audit today.