How seriously do you take your home security? Do you make sure you always lock your doors and don’t leave windows open when you’re out? Maybe you have an alarm system installed with a big box on the outside of your house to deter burglars. When you go away on holiday, do you take steps to make it look like someone is home; like timers on lights so that they turn on and off by themselves?
Are You Leaving Your Post In The Letterbox?
If you’re leaving the house for a while, you want to avoid announcing that fact to people passing, however there are some things that make it pretty obvious. Post piling up on your doormat and sticking out of your letterbox, bins that were emptied last week but haven’t been brought in off the pavement yet, or no lights in the house at night. These are some obvious signs that suggest you’re not around and it’s what sparks most impulse burglaries.
The same goes for your business. If you’re not changing your passwords, demonstrating poor security knowledge or leaving glaring holes in your network security, you are practically inviting hackers to target your business. Periodic pen testing and a robust security network can solve these problems, helping you close the letterbox and make your business safer.
Set The Burglar Alarm
9 times out of 10, a burglar alarm isn’t really bought so that it will notify you when someone’s in your house, most people buy them to act as a deterrent. After all, a burglar is more likely to target a house without any security systems than one with them, as they don’t want to get caught. Likewise, hackers are more likely to target businesses that have no threat detection or incident response plan in place, since they are less likely to be detected.
Making sure you have the appropriate firewalls and network defences in place will act as a significant deterrent to hackers; while having a clear incident response plan and team means, even if you are attacked, you can detect and shut it down quickly. Without any of these protections in place, a hacker could stay in your business network undetected for a long time, in fact, the average is 140 days!
Don’t Announce You’re Going Away
If you do go away for a long period of time, it’s wise not to post about it on social media or tell lots of people that you’re going away, because you’re basically broadcasting that your house will be empty and the perfect target. In business, the biggest weakness in the cyber defence web is usually the people in the business. Social engineering takes advantage of people and not technical flaws to get inside your systems, announcing computer system upgrades is a dangerous game. While your network is being disassembled, it is at its most vulnerable.
Avoid announcing big changes in your architecture, keep your cyber defences a well-kept secret and invest in proper training for all employees so that they know what information to share (and what not to share) in their day to day lives. Educated employees and robust but low-key security are great ways to fly under a hackers radar.
If you go on holiday you only need to worry about protecting your home for the time you’re away, however as a business owner, it’s your job to protect the data and security of your business from hackers 24/7. That means knowing where your weaknesses are, making the effort to fix them and keeping one eye on your cyber security as a complete picture at all times.