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Top Smart Ways to Protect a Business from Malware Attacks

October 14, 2019

 

Running a successful enterprise involves protecting confidential data. Find out here

the top smart ways on how to prevent malware attacks on your business.

 

The amount of malware online increases every year. Now, there are 960 million pieces of malware in existence, more than there ever has been.

 

All malware attacks vary; some will log your keystrokes, steal your data, use your computer as a spam server, and could simply just impact your system’s performance.

 

Regardless if you own a startup or a huge corporation, you can become the victim of a malware attack. Fortunately, you can safeguard your business from these attacks.

 

If you’re not sure how to prevent malware, here are some effective methods.

 

Install Anti-Malware Software

 

If you don’t have it yet, install anti-malware software. This type of software creates multiple barriers in your system, making it difficult for hackers to penetrate them.

 

In addition, many tech experts recommend you install different pieces of software. Most protection software only specializes in one area, leaving you with more vulnerabilities.

 

In addition, not every piece of software is perfect. Extra software ensures your system is fully secured.

 

For example, install software that protects your internet and another program that protects your data. You should also invest in antivirus and even anti-ransomware software.

 

An IT expert will help navigate your options and may even download and activate the software for you.

 

Secure Your Network

 

Network security is the act of taking measures to protect your network from misuse, unauthorized access, modification, malfunction, improper disclosure, and even destruction.

 

Installing a firewall to your network helps not only safeguard your system but it also monitors access. Other examples, such as DNS, add extra layers to your system to block malicious connections.

 

Use Encryption Software

 

Encryption is the act of restricting authorization. If you aren’t authorized the view the data, you won’t be able to access or even translate it. This makes it useless for hackers.

 

It’s mainly applied to data, specifically the data you send to others. Encrypting your data ensures your data is transferred from point A to point B safely.

 

Encryption is also important for the data you’re storing locally. Without authorization, hackers won’t be able to access your data.

 

You shouldn’t limit encryption to just one area. Optimize encryption for multiple areas and hard drives where your sensitive data is stored. Not only will you still access your data in the event of an attack, but your data also won’t be exploited.

 

Install Updates

 

We all know this situation — we turn on our computers, ready to work, and your computer requires a hefty update installation.

 

While it’s tempting to override an update, the few minutes of inconvenience is less severe than a malware installation.

 

Why does your system regularly update? With each new update comes added security features. These updates usually include patched up holes where hackers can infiltrate or a solution to any network vulnerabilities in your system.

 

This not only includes your overall system. Always update your software and applications. Hackers can also inject malware into these sources.

 

Educate and Train Your Employees

 

Did you know 92% of malware is delivered by email? Sure, maybe you can recognize a suspicious email. But can your staff?

 

Let’s say everyone in your organization receives the same suspicious email. The email comes with a downloadable attachment. It only takes one careless staff member to download the attachment and infect your whole system.

 

Always train your staff members to recognize malware and phishing links. Always keep your staff up-to-date on the latest malware attacks and other ways to safeguard your system.

 

Be Aware

 

Ignorance is bliss — until you’re attacked by hackers. Always stay aware and be prepared for a malware attack.

 

First, identify the different types of malware. Common types include:

  • Spyware

  • Adware

  • Worms

  • Trojan horses

  • Phishing

  • Ransomware

But there aren’t the only malware and threats. Hackers are smarter than you think.

 

New pieces of malware are created constantly and they’re difficult to destroy. The other best course of action is to stay updated on the newest threats and new cybersecurity methods.

 

Regularly research cybersecurity and the latest threats. Try and find any weak spots in your system. Outsource cybersecurity and IT professionals to help educate and train you on cybersecurity.

 

Protect Your Hardware

 

Remote access isn’t the only way for hackers to access your system.

 

Stolen hard drives, laptops, thumb drives, and phones are common ways for hackers to access your data and your system.

 

Always encrypt your data (remember our previous advice?), password protect your system, and keep an eye on all physical storage systems.

 

Create an Emergency Plan

 

What if you are the victim of a malware attack? Don’t ever say “it won’t happen to me.” Cyber attacks against businesses increased by 80%. The best course of action is to have an emergency response plan.

 

First, identify the signs of a malware attack. Some common signs include:

  • Pop-ups

  • A slow computer

  • Disabled programs

From here, decide what you’ll do if you find malware or your system is under attack as well as further protection and actions you’ll take after the attack. In addition, you should also inform the authorities.

 

This plan should always be discussed with your IT professional.

 

Use Powerful Passwords

 

Sure, abc123 was an easy password to think of at the moment. But anyone can think of a password like that — including hackers.

 

Ideally, your password is a combination of random letters, numbers, and symbols.

 

If you would rather keep a password that you’ll remember off the top of your head, choose something random that isn’t your social security number, address, or other sensitive information.

 

All passwords should be 12 characters long and include capital letters, even if the system doesn’t require it.

 

How to Prevent Malware: Outsource Your IT

 

Hackers can infiltrate your system easier than you think. As a business, it’s important you know how to prevent malware.

 

However, the best course of action is to outsource your IT and cybersecurity. Take a look at our IT services and see how we can help you.

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