Many business leaders are beginning to understand the advantages of digital transformation. Eighty-nine percent of firms have either adopted a digital-first approach or plan to do so, and 74 percent of executive decision-makers consider digital transformation a priority for their business.
But although digital transformation and the adoption of new technologies create many illustrious new business opportunities, they also introduce new types of risk. As businesses’ reliance on technology grew, so did the digital threats they faced online. And unless you strengthen your cyber security, your company may also be at risk. According to Statista, approximately 15 million data records were exposed in the third quarter of 2022 due to data breaches.
Cybersecurity threats are constantly changing. Due to this, it’s essential to be proactive about following the most recent trends and comprehending the vulnerabilities that could seriously hurt your company. Make an effort to become familiar with some of the typical cyberattack formats.
Learn more about digital threats and how to keep your business protected.
What Are Some Threats That Businesses Face Due to Digitization?
Any activity that aims to harm, steal, access, or disrupt sensitive information is considered a digital threat. Unfortunately, digital threats can arise from either external or internal threats to a business. External actors frequently implicated in digital threats include hackers, terrorist organizations, and criminal syndicates.
In protecting your online business, your ecomms surveillance should guard against the following threats:
- Phishing: This is a type of online fraud in which criminals send emails purporting to be from legitimate businesses. This scam is used to obtain personal information such as login credentials or credit card information.
- Internal threat: A security danger from within your business is known as an internal threat. Anyone with access to your network or irresponsible or resentful workers could be the culprit.
- Software apps: You leave yourself vulnerable to online dangers when you buy software without paying for an official license and from open-source libraries. Attackers may insert malware into a legitimate-looking app’s source code.
- Malware: Also known as malicious software, malware is intrusive software designed by cyber criminals to harm computers or steal data. They can come in many ways, with ransomware being the most common, particularly for businesses. Viruses, worms, spyware, ransomware, and Trojan viruses are the most common digital malware threats.
- Unmanaged IoT: A potential entry point for attackers might be any IoT device that connects to your network. Unmanaged mobile devices are another frequent source of security issues for businesses.
- Third-party service: Outsourcing has a lot of benefits, but it can also increase security threats. You are, after all, giving some of your private information to another company.
Cyber problems come in all shapes and sizes, but they all share one feature–the potential to harm businesses seriously. Businesses are vulnerable to digital threats ranging from phishing scams to malware attacks. It is nearly impossible to put a stop to cybercriminal activity. That is an unfortunate reality. You can defend yourself against the most dangerous digital threats before they reach you. Digital threat monitoring is required regularly to ensure the security of your data.
Here are some protective measures to guard against digital threats:
Encrypt and Back up Data
Your best defense against malware attacks, in which unauthorized individuals use harmful software to obtain access to your computer network, IT systems, data, or other digital resources, is to quickly switch to backup data unaffected by the intruders’ program.
In a ransomware assault, criminals may promise to restore your systems or return your data if you pay them, but there is no assurance that this will occur. It is less expensive and more dependable to have up-to-date, backed-up digital resources than to trust hackers’ good intentions.
If your small business processes sensitive or personal data, you are required by the GDPR Act to take reasonable precautions to protect that data from a breach. Despite being a European law, the GDPR applies to businesses outside of the EU that provide products or services to Europeans or track their online activities.
Scrambling or encrypting the data is one of the most efficient ways to accomplish this. If a cyber threat materializes, criminals won’t be able to decrypt the encrypted data because only authorized staff will have access to the key.
Incorporate an SSL Certificate
Aside from data encryption, it also helps your company rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) and gain the trust of your target audience. Most startups believe running a website on Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) provides adequate security against possible hacking attempts. However, using the Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure is a more advanced way to improve your company’s security (HTTPS). It’s a digital protocol that enhances data security between the client-server and the web browser. It is one of the most effective methods of preventing hacking attempts.
Develop a Security Protocol
A security policy can help safeguard your startup from online attacks. Creating one that outlines the security policies that apply to every facet of your company is imperative.Since companies are processing more data digitally, the policy should have a broad scope. It should encompass industry best practices, cloud computing, the Internet of Things (IoT), social media security, and regular procedures like data backup and security audits. A plan for handling incidents should also be available.
Implement a Third Party Risk Management Plan
A vendor risk management policy and a thorough explanation of the practices and procedures for each stage of the third-party risk management process are crucial. Send surveys and questionnaires to your third parties regularly to ensure they adhere to legal standards and take the proper cybersecurity precautions.
To ensure that you are immediately aware of any problems, you should adopt continuous monitoring and examine your third-party partnerships regularly. Depending on their responses to your surveys, you may need to perform an in-person audit of your third parties in some circumstances.
Conduct Cybersecurity Awareness Training for Employees
Employees can be a target of cybercrime. As such, inform your staff about cybersecurity concerns and the best workplace practices to follow. Due to the consistent increase in phishing efforts, it’s critical to prioritize raising staff awareness throughout training. Establish a cybersecurity culture that permeates your entire organization and all the people working there, including freelancers.
Make sure you and your management team implement solid cybersecurity practices. For instance, refrain from utilizing personal devices for business purposes and strictly adhere to your organization’s cybersecurity standards. Remember that everyone in the firm, not just the internal IT department, should be knowledgeable about cybersecurity.
Cybersecurity should always be a top priority, no matter the size of your company. In this digital age, it’s crucial to maintain the highest level of security, whether you’re running a startup or a large organization. You have a higher chance of preventing potential digital risks from causing harm, especially to sensitive data and ongoing business activities, if you are aware of these insightful security tips for startups.