Phishing, Email Scams, and Data Loss: How to Protect Your Business
We’re living in a digital world. While technology has advanced many businesses, it’s also enabled criminals to get their hands on valuable information. From hacked bank accounts to stolen identities, cybercrimes appear to be steadily on the rise. Although this is bad news for any business, you still have options. There are several ways to protect your company and to conduct damage control in before, during, and after a data breach.
Know When to Call a Pro
There’s a time and place for doing it all yourself, but when should you consider hiring an expert? If you’re experiencing data loss or unexpected downtime due to a phishing attack or online scam, it’s best to steer clear of attempting an intervention without professional assistance. Instead, Secure Data Recovery recommends connecting with tech professionals who specialize in data restoration. It’s your best chance of getting back on your feet with minimal damage. Try to find a company that meets your budget, offers risk-free diagnostics, excellent customer reviews, and speedy turnaround time.
How to Protect Yourself
Unfortunately, there’s no foolproof way to prevent data loss, but there are plenty of steps you can take to minimize your risk. Rather than fretting about whether you might be hacked, start planning for when you will be hacked. In fact, Yahoo! explains there’s a good chance your business data has already been compromised, even if you’re not aware of it.
Know Thy Enemy
Luckily, there are some things you can do to proactively protect yourself and your data. First, it helps to familiarize yourself (and your employees) with some of the most common types of online scams.
For instance, CPO Magazine notes phishing scams are responsible for 90% of all data breaches. Phishing occurs when cybercriminals pretend to be someone from a bank or other reputable organization, in an effort to gain access to the victim’s passwords, bank account, credit card, or identity.
Another online scam is spoofing, where scammers send emails that look identical to the ones sent by actual companies you do business with. For instance, you might receive a fake Paypal email that looks like it’s linking to www.paypal.com/SpecialOffers but, when clicked, the link redirects to a non-Paypal site. Typically, these spoofed webpages will attempt to trick you into entering your password.
Protect Home Base
To keep your company safe, it’s smart to use a password manager. Install and update antivirus protection on all devices as well, just in case something slips through, and remind your team never to share secure information via email, text, or phone, and enact a solid data protection policy.
Another step to minimize damage is to enact multi-factor authentication. With multi-factor authentication, all new logins require identity verification. Typically, you’ll enter a special token that’s sent to your mobile phone. With this extra level of security enabled, even if the scammer gets your password, they probably won’t be able to log in.
Sometimes even with all your protections in place, someone clicks the wrong thing. If that happens, act quickly. Your first step should be damage control. If you accidentally clicked a link in a spoofed email or provided your password during a phishing attempt, immediately change the password and contact your professional data security specialist. If you suspect you’ve been the target of cybercrime, you should also notify the authorities.
Phishing and other email scams can be a nightmare for any business. Depending upon the extent of the information stolen, you might face a costly disruption of operations. It’s essential to take security matters into your own hands, and have a pro’s input if you get into trouble. By protecting your business, enforcing cybersecurity policies, having a damage control plan, and quickly taking action if you suspect a breach, you can reduce your potential losses.