What Should Leaders Know About Cyber Security and Safe Surfing?

If you have a business device connected to the internet, you’ll need to seriously consider your cyber security processes. If not, you’re putting your business at risk.

Thankfully, you can avoid any threats by knowing the cyber essentials. In this blog, we guide you through everything to know – from how cyber security is vital to businesses, to ensuring staff are aware of internet safety practices.

What is cyber security?

Cyber security is the act of protecting computers or devices from damage or theft to their software, hardware or electronic data. It also guards against the disruption of services. It’s important that businesses have at least the very basic cyber essentials in place. This will help any organisation reduce the likelihood of an attack, no matter their size.

The National Cyber Security Centre provides guidance on this. It includes securing your internet connection, device and software, and effectively controlling data access. There’s even a Cyber Essential Certificate available, which not only helps provide visibility of your entire organisation’s cyber security but assures customers too.

Another cyber security principle is considering the potential circumstances where your business could be threatened. For example, maybe all devices have the same password. Instead of leaving the situation be, put an effective password policy in place. Two-factor authentication is another great cyber security technique.

Why cyber security is important?

Without cyber security processes in place, your business is at risk. Unless your data is backed up, one of the most common threats is losing it. This will result in business downtime as well as the associated costs in getting it back up and running. You’ll also lose productivity time, due to having to manage the situation.

Theft counts as a data breach. Customers may lose trust in you, leading to a negative reputation in the market. Some may choose to cease working with you, and new clients may potentially be deterred.

On top of this, you could be fined. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) legislation that came into place in 2018 is cracking down on data breaches. If you’ve not taken the necessary steps to avoid one, then there is a chance of a substantial penalty – potentially 4% of global annual turnover, or €20 million (whichever is higher).

How cyber security affects businesses

Countering the effects of a cyberattack isn’t the only way in which you’ll benefit from security. Cyber threats are increasingly becoming more sophisticated, and even those not especially skilled could threaten your business. If you have software in place that’s continuously updated, you’ll be able to meet these advanced threats with cutting-edge cyber security methods.

You’ll also benefit from maximised productivity. A cyberattack can lead to a standstill: it could be necessary to replace systems or devices. If a virus is installed on any computer, then their functionality may be significantly slowed down. And a cyberattack will be all the worse if you host your own website, and system infection results in it needing to go offline.

Once cyber security practices are implemented, you and your employees can use the internet without fear. Whilst even the top procedures can’t promise 100% protection, they will provide you with peace of mind.

Ensure safe surfing from all staff members

It’s also important to train staff in safe surfing, so they can use the internet without issue. In a work environment, cyberattacks often come in the form of phishing scams. Therefore, staff should be educated on what these typically contain.

Awareness around what constitutes a suspicious email will help. For instance, if they receive a message out of the ordinary, they shouldn’t click any links. Fraudsters often imitate legitimate URL addresses, particularly those of official bodies. There will be an almost unrecognisable difference.

Commonly, phishing emails request login or sensitive information, or urgently ask you to do something. There will be language used which if employees know about, will set alarm bells ringing. Often, they will claim your account has been compromised. It’s best to check with the official company by phoning them on a certified number.

If there is any sort of data breach, as a manager, you’ll need to be able to deal with it in the right manner. Knowing the core leadership and management capabilities can help handle situations like these. And these abilities can be provided by Leadership and Management apprenticeships, which Bright Direction Training offer.

Our apprenticeship qualifications, which are aligned with ILM qualifications, include all the modules to be a successful leader, including effective communication and decision making. To find out more information about what you could achieve with these qualifications, get in touch with our friendly team today. Call us on 01204 859 859, email us at info@brightdirectiontraining.co.uk, or fill out our contact form here.

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