Small businesses are at a disadvantage when it comes to keeping their websites secure. They do not have the deep pockets to invest in elaborate cybersecurity measures that bigger companies and corporations have — and yet they are an attractive target for cybercriminals who understand their security vulnerabilities. The key is recognizing that cybersecurity is a series of steps — not a foolproof blanket system — that will make it harder for cybercriminals to disrupt your website and business but without any guarantees.
A good place to start is at the initial stages of your website development. At DK Web Development, we make sure that each business website we design includes the latest in security plug-ins and certificates to help thwart nefarious activity that threatens your small business.
Know what you don’t know.
Entrepreneurs and small business owners typically have a good idea of what they want their website to look like and the functions they want — and need — it to perform. They may understand concepts like the importance of the user experience, an easy check-out process, and that the site should be secure. But beyond that, the small business owner’s in-depth knowledge of website design and development is typically pretty limited.
That’s understandable. You’re an entrepreneur, and website development and cybersecurity are specialized businesses. That’s why it is important to “know what you don’t know.” A website designer may brandish a portfolio of impressively designed sites, but that doesn’t mean they have experience with cybersecurity. In fact, they likely do not. You can find an individual or company with expertise in both design and development, including cybersecurity options that your small business can afford.
Understand the limits of cybersecurity.
There is no such thing as foolproof cybersecurity. Cybercriminals are perpetual students and they learn everything they can to understand — and then undermine — the latest cybersecurity technology. The best security systems just keep them at bay for a while or make what would have been an easy job more difficult. In addition to incorporating the latest cybersecurity technology into your business system and website, other steps you can and should take include:
- Train your employees and have a plan. Many cyber-attacks happen because an employee clicks on a link or an appealing online ad that they shouldn’t have — and that is akin to opening the door to a criminal in an otherwise secure house. Hit this point home as many times as it takes. For as much as we like to tout technological advances today, including those in cybersecurity, it still comes down to training people on how to use the systems and how to behave in the most common-sense and secure manner possible.
- Get cybersecurity insurance to cover any losses.
- Use multi-factor authentication (MFA). It takes a few more steps but it’s worth it. Don’t let employees take the easy route when it comes to passwords and authentication.
- Make frequent backups. You are not nearly as susceptible to ransomware threats if you have your entire system backed up. Even if your site development company does it, it’s an added layer of security to conduct in-house backups, as well.
Finally, don’t cut corners on frequent checkups and software updates to ensure your website security technology is up to date. You don’t have to spend your entire technology budget doing this, either. You can find and hire a cybersecurity professional through online work platforms to protect you and your customers. These platforms allow you to screen cybersecurity professionals by weighing online customer reviews, delivery times, and costs. Often, you can find the expertise of a high-dollar cybersecurity professional for a fraction of the cost of a company.
Your defense is in the preparation and expectation
Small business cybersecurity is about managing your expectations and your preparations. The more realistic you are, and the better prepared you are, the more likely you can mitigate and weather any attack. You can keep the minor attacks from becoming large incidents that swallow your business operations. For more information and advice on protecting your small business, give DK Web Development a call today.