How to Keep Your Business Data Safe

Most businesses know that safeguarding customer details, financial information, sales figures, contracts and other key information is crucial, but knowing the best way to do this often is where the problem lies.

Choosing, implementing and maintaining the right information technology strategy to protect your specific data care requirements can be complicated. Unless you have a good working knowledge of IT, or your own in-house team of experts, it is usually something that you will need outside help with. Employing the services of a business IT Support Specialist is usually the easiest way to put in place the procedures, tasks and resources that are required to ensure your business data is always kept secure.

A business IT Support Specialist will

  1. Ensure your business data is backed up securely and regularly. It is essential that backups are scheduled to run automatically and not left to someone to remember to do them. A good IT support professional will usually schedule backups to run at a quiet time, usually overnight and will create a series of both on-site backups, as well as off-site, cloud based backups. This will protect your data even in a worst case scenario of your business premises going up in flames.
  2. Ensure that anti-virus software is installed and kept up to date on all computers, laptops and tablets (including regular scans for malware). They will schedule important software updates e.g. Windows updates, at times which will have the least impact on the business, usually after hours. Many small businesses see software updates as an inconvenience but it is important that they are not ignored as they often contain security fixes as well as program enhancements.
  3. Control what data your employees have access to. A support specialist will be able to create different levels of access across your network. This will ensure that staff can only access information essential to their particular role. Procedures can also be put in place to deactivate logins and network access when a member of staff leaves your organisation.
  4. Proactively monitor your network for signs of potential problems. By doing this they will be able to deal with any potential problems, before they have time to reach the stage of creating an issue which may affect the day to day operation of your business.
  5. Help you put in place a disaster recovery policy. This policy will outline the procedures needed to recover vital business data to get your business up and running, should a disaster happen e.g. fire, flood, cyber attack etc.

However, keeping your business data safe is not only about preventing hardware and software problems. Human error is responsible for a great many incidents involving sensitive or confidential data being lost, viewed or stolen. As an employer it is therefore very important that you educate your employees that they too have a responsibility to keep your business data safe.

It is an employee’s responsibility to

  1. Create strong passwords, change them regularly and never write them down or share them with anyone
  2. Spot suspicious looking emails and know what to do if they receive one
  3. Lock their desktop with a password protected screensaver any time they are away from their desk
  4. Understand the importance of never storing sensitive data on a USB flash drive or any portable device that has not been encrypted

If you need help with keeping your business data safe, please get in touch with DATA Computer Services. We are specialists in IT support and our range of support packages allow you to choose the right level of support for your business.