Cybersecurity Best Practices for Businesses Around the Holidays
We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the holiday season is approaching fast and will be here in less than two months. The holidays are a prime time for businesses to experience cyberattacks. Employees are distracted by the busyness of the holidays and may leave the company infrastructure open to social engineering attacks like phishing. Employees who are working remotely can also put the infrastructure at risk because they may choose to use insecure connectivity from sources such as public Wi-Fi. Although we have not hit Halloween quite yet, we wanted to highlight some tips on cybersecurity best practices for businesses around the holidays.
Provide your employees with cyber awareness training before the busy season hits
The hustle and bustle of the holidays can lead to the threat of social engineering attacks against distracted employees. Social engineering attacks are a category of cybercrimes that center around the staff of an organization in order to gain access to desired information. Phishing attacks are the most common type of social engineering attack, but they can be stopped by employees who undergo cybersecurity awareness training. Getting this training is especially important before the holidays because the season gives cybercriminals new ways to build trust and manipulate an organization’s employees. Tekscape offers a comprehensive cybersecurity awareness training program for businesses. Learn more here.
Set up a VPN (virtual private network) for holiday shutdowns and remote work
It is very common for businesses to have a temporary shutdown for the holidays. It is also common for many employees to be traveling and working remotely. Whatever the situation at your business is, it is likely that your employees are going to need remote access to your company’s network. For example, even if there is a shutdown occurring, payroll cannot skip writing checks for that week. The best way to handle holiday work out of the office is to integrate a VPN or virtual private network.
A VPN allows users to access company network resources on a secure remote connection. It does this by creating a tunnel between an organization’s network and the user that is virtually private. Even if the user is using public Wi-Fi, they are still protected by using the VPN. When using the VPN, be sure to employ the strongest authentication methods you can. This is why implementation of the VPN should always be done by a professionally managed service provider of IT. Learn more about how we can help you with integrating a VPN for your business.
Start cybersecurity patching before the holidays start
Your employees may get a flu shot to prevent themselves from getting sick over the holidays, but your internal information system should also get a virtual flu shot before the holidays hit. This is to make sure all of the security patching is done, your equipment is updated, and all of the upgrades to your infrastructure are complete. This can be done by your internal IT team but can more easily be taken care of by a managed service provider. In fact, using a managed service provider will ensure that all of these updates are done on a regular basis, so you do not have to worry about hassling your internal IT team to do them.
Make sure your cybersecurity and infrastructure are ready for the scale of the holidays
Every industry gets busier around the holidays. You may think that retail is the only industry that has a significant increase in activity, but this is incorrect. Tekscape works with four types of industries, and each tends to get busier once November rolls around. Our manufacturing clients have to keep up with the supply and demand of the companies that purchase their products.
Our financial clients are busy preparing client budgets for holiday shopping and travel. Our educational clients are getting ready to send their students home for the holidays, but they still need access to the school’s VPN while on vacation. Lastly our legal clients are rushing to finish up cases and are also likely to be working remotely during their holiday break. All this work can really test the strength of your internal IT infrastructure.
Having your infrastructure go down around the holidays is detrimental as you could be missing valuable business opportunities. A good way to make sure you have reliable security and infrastructure is to invest in cloud computing. Cloud computing is handled externally by a managed service provider within an external cloud environment.
One of the best things about using cloud computing around the holidays is that it allows to scale up and down for the current business atmosphere. Businesses that experience a significant increase in activity around the holidays can request that their cloud infrastructure be increased temporarily for that time. Even if your business experiences any type of downtime from cyberattacks, cloud computing can have you back up and running in no time.
Choose a managed service provider that offers managed security services
Tekscape can help manage your cybersecurity no matter where your team works. We can arm your business with managed security to keep data safe. Protect your company’s network, applications, and devices all-in-one place. Understand your digital landscape with the proper tools and hardware that will help reduce the risk of cyber-attacks. Make data-driven decisions and optimize your internal resources to navigate along your security landscape.
Tekscape is committed to providing proactive, responsive, and timely managed IT services support for our clients. We start with our comprehensive new client onboarding process designed to get your business up-and-running on our monitoring and management tools with as little disruption as possible. Please reach out to learn more about cybersecurity best practices for businesses around the holidays.