As Director of Operations at Hudson Contract, the buck stops with me when it comes to online safety and security. We continually monitor our systems to ensure all our data is kept secure and review our processes to keep our team safe from threats.
Meanwhile, a new breed of cyber-criminal continues to treat the internet like an ATM – only a lot safer to rob – and I read about alarming new scams and their consequences all the time:
- Financial fraud and online crime is costing the UK £2,000,000 every day
- Getting on for 50% of businesses have spotted cyber security breaches or attacks in the last 12 months (including British Airways, the latest in a long line of blue chips to find itself at the centre of a major IT scandal)
- Business email fraud attacks are at an all-time high, with money transfer traps and malicious links the most popular types of crime
Now for the worse news: only three in ten firms actually have a cyber security policy.
So here are seven steps you can take to keep your systems safe. You might want to circulate them to your staff:
- Never open attachments that appear unusual, even if the email seems to have come from someone you know
- Don’t click on email links to familiar websites that require a secure login. Go directly to the website instead
- Always double check when payment details are changed
- Check that sites asking for sensitive information display https:// in the address bar and display a padlock. It means you have a secure connection
- Ensure your data is regularly backed-up
- Always have anti-virus and anti-spam software and keep it up to date
- Change passwords on a regular basis
- Avoid public WIFI connections, if possible. These can easily be spoofed or hijacked and you may not be connecting to where you think.
Time to review – or formulate – your company’s online security policy?
Get off to a quick start by taking a look at these two guides from the Metropolitan Police and the National Cyber Security Centre
The Little Book of Big Scams
10 Step to Cyber Security