Many small business owners are vulnerable to online attacks. This is because they usually don’t have the money to buy and install security products. They also lack the personnel to maintain their security. Hackers target these small businesses because they are very easy to steal information from.
What most small business owners don’t realize is that there are many free tools that they can use to protect their businesses. They don’t have to invest a lot of money to protect their businesses against online threats and theft.
Protect Your Network:
Obviously, most of the threats come from the Internet. Use filtering software to block dangerous websites especially those phishing sites. These are designed to trick users to entering confidential information and stealing them or to infect your computers with malware. Search for free cloud-basedfiltering products that can protect your PC, mobile device or entire network from these phishing attacks. One such product is OpenDNS. This program is free but for a fee, this product can also block websites that companies don’t want to access while in the office.
There are also free vulnerability scanners available so that you can find any weak spots in your network. You should also scan your website for any vulnerabilities and malware especially if you get a lot of visits in a day. Security Onion offers a compilation of free tools for detection and network monitoring that your IT staff can use.
Protect Your Computers:
If you are using a Windows or Mac computer, be sure to turn on your firewall. You can download free antivirus software over the Internet. The most popular one is AVG. Microsoft also offers a free basic security software called Microsoft Security Essentials. If you are using Mac, Sophos offers free antivirus software. You can use the automatic update features of your free software so you are always up-to-date.
Protect Your Data:
Lastly, protect your data. You need a full disk encryption software to make your information in all your devices unreadable to unauthorized people. TrueCrypt offers Windows, Linux and Mac users such software. You can also use this to secure data on your thumb drives and other storage devices.
Remember to always have a backup of your important data in case of theft, loss or damage. Mozy offers users 2 gigs of data backup for free. These are encrypted in their data centers.
No security program is perfect but if you use these free tools, you can at least defend your company from the most common attacks. In the future, set aside some budget to make your online security stronger.