The IT consultant’s guide to small business network security
As a business owner or office manager, there are a dozen things you are tracking at any given moment; your employees, your clients, income, expenses, etc. Most likely you don’t want to add internet and systems security to that list. Here at True North IT, we keep our client’s systems up to par with the best industry practices for small business security. Here are a few simple steps your computer consultant can implement at your company to help protect your data security and hardware.
1. Setup a “Guest” Wifi Network
A lot of small and medium-sized businesses have just one wifi network that they share with guests who come into their building. Guests such as vendors, clients, or patrons. We recommend creating a “Guest” Network that you can give visitors without compromising your “secure” network used only by employees. This will protect your company by prohibiting visitors from potentially connecting to another computer, server, or other network resources within your office or network environment.
2. Invest in a Business-Grade Firewall Router
Is your company using the standard router originally provided by your Internet Service Provider? If so, this device probably provides a rudimentary level of security but isn’t nearly as robust as a properly configured Firewall Router. IT consultants typically recommend small and medium-sized business owners invest in a business-grade Firewall Router for best security practices.
3. Protect Your Passwords
The days of writing your password on a sticky note and leaving it on your computer monitor are behind us. Small businesses need to be more diligent than ever before about protecting their passwords. Passwords that could provide access to sensitive bank data, email accounts, and private information. Use complex, hard to guess passwords and store them using a “Password Manager” tool (like LastPass).
4. Control User Access with a Managed Network Directory
A Managed Network Directory controls what computers and programs each employee has access to. Managers can create policies that dictate user permissions and access by level. The best part? Managed Networks can be centrally managed by your IT consultant! (Hey, that’s us!) We will manage all of the user permissions and access levels, set up new employees, and configure new computers to sync to the network.
5. Avoid Common Business Email Scams
Many email phishing scams specifically target the employees of companies with publicized email addresses. Always double-check the email address of the sender. Many phishing scams will use email addresses that closely resemble those of your actual contacts. Double-check emails that are requesting any type of payment with your computer consultant. Common scams targeted toward small and medium-sized businesses will ask you to change the bank details for a payment, an invoice, or direct deposit info.
Want to learn more about getting your business up to speed? Contact True North IT today to discuss your support needs.