While October is a month typically devoted to zombies, ghosts & ghouls there’s another trick that is being recognized this month aside from those that occur on Halloween.

Since 2014, October has been billed as National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM), sponsored by the National Cyber Security Alliance, a non-profit organization launched by the Department of Homeland Security.
NCSAM was designed as a collaboration between government and industry to ensure that every American has the resources they need to stay safer and more secure online.

A large part of the NSCAM mission is to provide families with information they can use to protect themselves online, providing tips to protect against spam and phishing, staying secure while shopping online, securing personal accounts, avoiding social media oversharing, securing a home network and educating on the importance of backing up critical files.

While NSCAM aims to protect the public at large, businesses can embrace the month of October as well, and use the month as a time to reflect on their own cyber security efforts and try to improve processes in time for the new year.

In honor of NSCAM, below are some cyber security awareness tips small business owners should take to secure their business, powered by your friends at ThrottleNet:

Identify & Understand Your Technology

To protect your business from cyber security threats you need to have a thorough understanding of what needs protected.
Catalog all your critical assets, and understand the value of your technology. HR systems, customer databases and intellectual property are all incredible assets that your company holds. On the black market, associating social security numbers with phone numbers and email addresses holds tremendous value.

Have a Plan to Protect Your Assets

Build your cybersecurity safeguards around protecting your critical data first and educate end users on what they can do to help. For many small businesses, we recommend safeguards like stronger password authentication policies, implementation of cloud backup systems, regular software patching and limiting data access to only required users. Employees should be trained on the importance of cyber security, and how to handle confidential information.

Detect Incidents

To understand threats that may impact your business, you don’t have to be a cyber security expert. It’s important to understand how threats such as ransomware, phishing attacks and other scams present themselves and their potential impact on your business. Having a network monitoring system in place can help your business stay ahead of potential issues before they grow into a catastrophic problem.

Learn How to Respond to An Issue

A data breach can have huge a huge impact on your day-to-day productivity, and can impose tough-to-swallow legal implications for your business if customer data is compromised. In the event your data does become compromised, have a plan in place to:
• Restore your data
• Identify what data has been lost and the impact of losing that data
• Successfully continue operations
• Communicate the incident with key stakeholders
• Ensure compliance with applicable laws
• Report the breach to appropriate agencies

Partner with a Cyber Security Expert

This October, we want zombies to be the only thing you’re scared of. Aligning your small business with a Managed IT services provider can ensure that your business has all aspects of cybercrime prevention covered. From helping your company develop actionable policies, to monitoring network activity, to backing up critical data files, ThrottleNet has your brand covered.

To get the most out of these cyber security awareness tips, learn more about our Managed Network packages or contact us today to start moving your business full-throttle.