From a business perspective, the Internet can be a risky space. It often leads to the question of, does my business need to be online? Whether you are marketing your products or services, receiving orders from customers by email or through web order forms, or simply doing research on your line of business, you know that having an internet presence is crucial to your business. In fact, 70% of internet users aged 55-64 say they’ve bought something online in the past month, according to data from Hootsuite’s Digital 2020 Report, and 37% plan to continue doing so even after the pandemic is over.
The Internet has been a game-changer for all businesses. Getting online has never been easier: open your smartphone and start surfing or fire up your laptop and connect to your Wi-Fi hotspot. If you aren’t using the Internet in some fashion, you can pretty much guarantee your competition is. You can also guarantee that your customers and prospective customers are online. If you’re not online in some way for them to find or interact with, they’ll simply move on to your competition. Studies show that 87% of shoppers begin product searches on digital channels. Additionally, 71% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase based on social media referrals.
As you can see, being part of the global digital workplace isn’t an option any longer. As the above statistics show, it’s a necessity for any business to survive and thrive. So how do you lessen the risk that comes with being on the Internet?
- Only keep the data you need
Keeping extraneous data because “you might need it someday” could put your business at risk of a breach, compliance fines and loss of brand reputations. Always check with the compliance and government standards in your area to ensure what you need to keep, and what you can destroy. One general rule is to ask yourself these questions: Is the data critical? Is this data a permanent document? Is the data proprietary intellectual property? Does the data serve the current needs of the business? If the answer is no to these questions, it is probably best to delete it.
- Invest in cyber awareness training for staff
For you and your staff, it is important to know that there are people out there who want to steal your information. Cyber criminals will target business owners and staff alike by trying to trick them into giving up valuable information, or into downloading malware to deliver a big ransomware payout. Knowing what these tricks look like and how to avoid them is a big part of protecting your business from cyber crime.
- Hire a cyber security firm to take care of the details
You are a specialist in running your own business, but that doesn’t necessarily make you a specialist in cyber security. Just like you would hire a bookkeeper to help keep tabs of your finances, hiring a cyber security expert to help you manage the risks associated with an online business just makes sense.
You don’t have to do it all alone. Quick Intelligence’s Quick Protect service is meant to help keep your business safe from cyber risk. Our cyber security experts will ensure your business is protected so you can focus on what you do best: running your business.