Boost your business cybersecurity during COVID-19 lock-down period

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Both small and big companies are at risk as the number of attacks will increase during this lock down period. All over the world businesses are urged to embrace online engagement with their customers, and sale of their products.Banking security experts are advising that businesses of all sizes need a plan to defend cybersecurity threats. The following are tips on how to protect data, assets and transactions with any business—small or big, and in any sector.

Cyber-attacks may be launched over the internet or rely on someone with physical access to a company’s premises by using: emails that contain malicious hyperlinks and attachments with messages that often look like they came from a colleague and are commonly referred to as Phishing attempts, or legitimate-looking websites that are set up to capture users’ login credentials, or social engineering to convince unsuspecting employees to reveal confidential information or credentials, or mobile apps that contain malicious code to remove native software, and/or physical devices, most notably USB sticks infected with malicious software where hackers may connect one to a company system, or leave it in a public area with the hope that an unsuspecting employee will pick it up, use it and inadvertently infect the company’s network.

Developing a good cybersecurity plan does not have to be an overwhelming task to any business but the following can be employed to control and help protect your business:

  • Ensure you know who has access to your network, and all of your applications and systems whether the employee is working from home or from the office. Do remember when an employee leaves or changes jobs make sure their access is turned off.
  • Secondly change your password frequently, and urge employees to use strong passwords by having unique passwords for different sites or systems they access.
  • Lastly do not cut corners on protective software. Remember it is worth the cost to buy subscriptions to allow you to receive regular updates that recognize and protect against new threats.

Fraud attempts may infiltrate even the strongest security measures, so continually monitor your accounts for suspicious activity. Provide good internal controls, such as initiating a review process before paying any new party for the first time. And most importantly, foster a culture of cybersecurity awareness among employees and customers.

Lastly, trust your instincts.If you receive a request via e-mail to perform a transaction, click on an unfamiliar link, or are offered a prize make sure you recognize the source. If it doesnot feel right, itis most likely not a legitimate request.

Collins Amimo is a PHD Student at Maseno University

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