With reports of ransomware and other cyber attacks making the headlines, we wanted to share some thoughts on how to protect yourself and your company, clients and staff. Each company out there has different levels of security needs. However, there are some commonalities of which we all need to be aware.

A breach in security without immediate consequence is still risky.
Have you ever received a suspicious email, clicked on a link, and then thought, “Maybe I shouldn’t have done that.” You then run a virus or malware scan to make sure you are safe, and it comes back clean. If you are thinking “No harm, no foul,” you may want to think again. By clicking the link, the attacker knows you are a human and are prone to clicking. They may then target you more often. Increasing your awareness moving forward is the best way to protect yourself.

Data backups are key to security protection.
While no system can protect from every possible threat, properly managed backup systems can make sure you can recover from one. The most common attacks these days are ransomware. In this type of cyber attack, the attacker holds your data hostage until you pay to have it back. With proper backups, you have a copy of the data and won’t feel pressured into paying the ransom.

Protection is needed on more than just your PCs.
While the most common issues we hear about have occurred on Windows PCs, those are not the only devices that need protection. Any device that connects to the Internet should be considered vulnerable. Even devices we don’t traditionally consider vulnerable are now being targeted. New printers that now contain hard drives and operating systems to give you a better experience can also be targeted. Check out HP’s The Wolf campaign to learn more about this.

The best system is only as good as its weakest link.
No matter how many security layers we implement to protect our systems, it is only as good as its weakest link. Make sure every employee in your organization is aware of his or her role in your security system.

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Bob Spencer
As Information Technology Manager, I oversee operations of the firm’s IT department including IT projects, IT related research, license and inventory control, and Helpdesk. I also manage all IT systems and hardware. He has more than 15 years of experience in various IT roles.

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