Common Network Security Risks and How to Overcome Them

Network Security Risks

Every modern business heavily depends on their access to the internet, whether for internal communications among different teams, data storage and exchange, or for the sake of smoother client relationships in many forms. Not a single company can afford not to use a network for its operations, but the inherent risks of the online world are something that shouldn’t be underestimated or overlooked in all of your security strategies.

For starters, understanding your weakest links, your most common threats, and the simplest as well as most effective ways of tackling such threats are all vital steps to preserve your business data, as well as privileged client information, and ultimately, your brand reputation. You cannot allow your business to lose any sensitive information, otherwise you will most likely lose your clients and your standing in your industry will be compromised. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common network security risks and the most powerful ways to prevent and overcome them with the optimal strategy.

Data protection and hackers

If you believe that your business is safe simply because it’s not a major corporation, you couldn’t be further from the truth. Small companies are at risk of hacker attacks just as much as big companies, and even solo operations with a website presence or an online store can be discovered by hackers who are looking for sensitive data on your customers. If there’s a weak link in your network, rest assured that someone will find it and use it to their advantage.

To make sure your business network is secure enough to store sensitive data, you should take a serious, layered approach to data security. For example, in addition to choosing a cloud provider with built-in security measures, added local, on-site security by your own IT experts is a great way to constantly increase your data security protocols. The bottom line is, never take hackers for granted or underestimate their ability to discover a weak link in your structure.

Malware and limiting network access

Employees will often use their company-issued devices to browse, use private social media accounts, personal emails, and even visit a wide range of poorly-secured websites that could pose a risk to your internal network structure. To mitigate that risk and manage online behavior of your teams, you can implement a comprehensive secure web gateway solution that prevents your employees from visiting unsecured sites that could be harmful to your network.

In addition to smart traffic management and helping your employees stay on the safe side of their online behavior, such solutions are a must for the sake of legal compliance and greater data security. As a result, your data will be safely kept away from unauthorized access, and your internal teams will have a more disciplined approach to utilizing your network every day.

Software updates taken seriously

Every single business operation depends on all kinds of software every day. Be it your communication tool, your basic project management platform, or your analytics and reporting software, your company uses a wide range of tools to grow, collect data, and to communicate more effectively. What often happens among employees is that they can postpone software updates on their devices and thus jeopardize your network security.

It’s necessary to use your IT teams to regularly conduct reviews of your systems and your software solutions, remind your employees to regularly perform software updates to seal those security leaks, and to prevent security breaches through outdated software.

Poor password practices and employee training

No matter how large or small your organization might be, chances are that some of your employees are not regularly updating their passwords, let alone using them correctly to protect everything from their business email accounts to their numerous software accounts and cloud access. This is even true for savvy IT professionals who aren’t immune to poor password choices, either. In such instances, employees can be the source of your greatest network security risks, and the most complex problem to solve, especially since it requires ongoing investments.

First of all, you can and should teach your employees how to use password management tools that are designed to safely store and generate their strongest passwords. Plus, this helps them regularly change their passwords to reduce the risk of network penetration even further. Finally, you’ll need to educate your employees on safe password practices and make it a part of your onboarding procedure to train newcomers to stick to the same principles of secure data management and password protection.

There’s no such thing as a perfect, unified solution to all of these problems. Truth be told, these are just some of the most frequently-encountered security issues modern businesses face, but there are many more that occur on a daily basis, and most of your security measures are able to prevent them. However, if you don’t stick to security best practices, you risk exposing your sensitive data and ruining your own reputation. Make sure that you’re in the know of the latest security protocols, and work with professionals who specialize in ensuring your business security across the board – these are the only surefire ways to reduce your risk of security issues well in advance.

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