If you’re a Jacksonville business owner, chances are you and your employees rely heavily on the Internet. From emails and payroll software to online sales and advertising, businesses need the Internet to function. Unfortunately, this also means your Jacksonville business has becomes an easier target for cyber criminals who use malware to create chaos and extort money.
Since the advent of the Internet in the ‘90s, cyber criminals have become more and more prevalent, evolving their tactics and malware to outsmart program developers and security software. What was once a nuisance for businesses and organizations is now a multi-billion-dollar criminal enterprise. According to the US government, cyber crime cost the US economy between $57 billion and $109 billion in 2016 alone.
JACKSONVILLE IT SERVICES
It’s safe to say that your Jacksonville business cannot afford to take cyber attacks lightly. To help you defend your business against hackers, here are some helpful tips from the IT support experts at Workforce IT of Jacksonville.
1. MAKE USE OF FIREWALLS
Firewalls are your first line of defense against cyber criminals. They help to secure your network from outside threats that can exploit applications you and your employees use that are connected to the Internet, such as email and online messaging tools. Essentially, not having a firewall is like not having locks on your doors and windows.
2. INVEST IN STRONG CYBER SECURITY
Nowadays, most cyber criminals are too sophisticated for over-the-counter security software. You need full-service protection that’s robust and sophisticated enough to defend your computers and network from malware attacks. Professional Jacksonville IT services can install anti-malware, antivirus and anti-ransomware suites that will better protect your business from cyber threats.
3. BE WEARY OF UNSOLICITED EMAILS
Hackers love to use phishing emails to trick victims into unwittingly opening and downloading corrupt files and links that contain malware. Never open an attachment or click on a link in an unsolicited email. This goes for unsolicited phone texts as well.
4. KEEP YOUR SYSTEMS UPDATED
When you receive available updates, always be sure to fully update all your systems and programs. Whether it’s an application, operating system or security software, developers constantly find loopholes that cyber criminals can squeeze through, so to speak. To fix these loopholes, developers create updates that include patches. These patches will shore up any weaknesses that hackers can exploit to infect your business with malware.
5. DATA ENCRYPTION
Hackers love to steal data or block access to it in order to extort money. This is a form of malware called ransomware, and has been used to ransom everything from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies. By encrypting your data, it will be useless to hackers if a breach occurs.
6. STRONG PASSWORDS
Strong passwords are a must for any Jacksonville business. Be sure all your employees are using strong ones that use high character counts that will make it harder for hackers to gain access and use malware. Operating systems can also suggest very strong passwords and store them for easy access.
7. BACK UP FILES
It’s always a good idea to back up your files on separate secure networks, like servers or cloud services. This will allow your business to still operate and mitigate the damage if it falls victim to a cyber attack.
These tips will help you protect your Jacksonville business from dangerous malware, but your safest bet is to use the services of an experienced IT company. Workforce IT of Jacksonville has both the remote and on-site IT services to remove malware and protect you from future attacks. Call today to secure your business’ future 904.638.8406.