Data breaching has become so rampant in the recent past. With the worldwide information market forecast to reach $170.4 billion by next year, we must brace ourselves to witness more and more data breaches.
Data breaching is the process of attackers or hackers finding illegal access to your data and using it against you, either for personal gains or to derail you and cause you harm. With very little loophole, attackers can hit your network and make away with multifarious vital and sensitive data.
Your data may not only be breached through the internet. It could still be physical. When people have access to your gadgets, they could still infringe on your data. And for sure, this is one thing you do not want to happen to you. The cost of a cyber breach is increasing at a rapid pace. Cybersecurity Ventures predicts the damages caused by data breaches to hit a whopping figure of $10.5 trillion annually by 2025.
To be on the safe side, you should install proper cybersecurity measures that will help you protect your system from cyber attackers. Several measures can be effective in securing your system from data breaches. This article will furnish you with steadfast and the most effective ways to avert data breaches. I hope they assist you in sheltering your data from the many data breaches and malicious hackers that are rampaging these streets.
- Protect Your Hardware and Physical Gadgets
So many people haven’t taken this measure seriously, and believe me, the results have been grave. Failure to protect your hardware will result in a very successful breach of your data. Never let this happen. Protect your hardware and do it well. Ensuring the safety of your electronic gadgets, that is, your Smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop, is vital in combating data breaches. Be keen and do not allow everyone to interact with these gadgets. People have mastered the art of breaching data in a blink of an eye.
For office computers, mounting surveillance cameras or simply having good security in place is essential. Please do not allow your employees to have USBs in the workplace; they could use them to transmit valuable data that affects your organization when it lands in the wrong hands. Sometimes, hackers will want to use shortcuts.
Therefore, they will target your physical gadgets. Because you store your passwords on your browsers, all a hacker will need to carry out a data breach is the physical gadget. Security to your systems does not necessarily require complex security protocols and procedures. The simple things we do, such as enhancing physical security and access restrictions, could go a long way into ensuring your security.
- Security Awareness and Training Program
Your employees could make a good reason your data has been breached or is in place to be breached. This could be due to ignorance of data security measures.
On the other hand, they could be using your workplace computers for other reasons, visiting insecure sites, opening mischievous emails, or using the computers for purposes other than those they have been meant for could be so lethal.
Hackers are ever on the lookout, and with such activities going on in your workplace, spam links will be used again to gain access to your data. Conducting staff awareness and training on the importance of data security and the measures your employees can use to fight data breaches will help you and them.
Teach them security protocols and have guiding principles that limit their conduct in the workplace. Teach them how to respond to anything that smells like a data breach rapidly. With this in place, you could sleep soundly, knowing there won’t be a data breach occasioned by the ignorance of any of your staff.
Furthermore, an excellent website security training and awareness program will establish a culture of cybersecurity. Employees and staff will know what to do and how to do it to remain secure. If you are to stay safe from cyber breaches, you better start thinking about initiating a cybersecurity training and awareness program.
- Utilize Strong and Unique Passwords
Passwords have been there for as long as anyone can recall. From ancient times, passwords have been critical in the security sector. They still are, and they forever will be. They act as the first line of defense that can prevent data breaches from occurring on your network. Having a password for your data will help protect your data against unauthorized access.
However, having a password is one thing; having a strong password is another. A strong password is what you need. Strong passwords are usually characterized by length and complexity. A perfect password should be over eight characters in length. The password should also be a mix of letters, numbers, and symbols.
It must be sophisticated but one that you can memorize. Using your birth date, identification number, or any other numbers that may be in the public domain puts you at risk of a data breach. Be wise, devise super-strong passwords with the standards above while securing your data.
Additionally, passwords should be unique. Ensure that you use a different password to secure each data repository. Using one password puts all the data repositories in grave danger. All a hacker will require is a single password to access all your data. Lastly, it would help if you minded how you store the passwords. Writing them down or storing the passwords in your browsers is not the right way to go. Better memorize them.
- Use Two-factor Authentication
Also known as multi-factor authentication, two-factor authentication is one valuable means of securing your data against breaches. This method uses twin or more pieces of evidence before a user is allowed access to a site. Multi-factor puts more pressure on the password. When the approved password is fed in, the user receives a subsequent security question to verify he/she is the genuine user of the information he demands access to. Doesn’t this safeguard your data? It perfectly does.
Multiple-factor authentication could use a security code sent to your devices via email or phone. It could also require you to provide an answer to a security question. The question could range from your favorable football team, your best dish, your best friend, or anything best known to you. More recently, biometric verification such as fingerprints and IDs and facial recognitions are also gaining popularity. Two-factor authentications, therefore, work so well in protecting your data from being breached. The results are there for your perusal once you implement the same.
- Install a Firewall
Firewalls play a very critical role in web security and data breach prevention. And so, what is a firewall? It is a security protocol that checks to control incoming and outgoing networks to determine that they are secure for use. The firewall places a strong barrier like that of a real fire between trusted and untrusted websites. This allows the system to deny access to the insecure website to the computer over the internet.
Firewalls are on top of the aggressive measures against data breaches. Firewalls such as packet filtering firewalls, Next-gen firewalls, software firewalls, hardware firewalls, and Cloudflare firewalls are essential in the data safety scene. They help you scrutinize incoming and outgoing traffic to help mitigate threats that may breach your data and harm the wellbeing of your information.
- Use SSL Certificates to Encrypt Communications
If you plan to or already own a website and seek to protect your data and that of your clients, you will have to install an SSL certificate. An SSL certificate (secure socket layer) is a security apparatus that works by encrypting your website. It stops attackers or hackers who seek to tamper with valuable data and communication.
SSL chiefly secures communication between a client and the server. These certificates can be sourced from any SSL certificate issue authorities. Some of the best SSL certificate providers you can go for include; Comodo SSL, GeoTrust SSL, and RapidSSL. The SSL certificate is what gives the difference between HTTP and an HTTPS website. The S in HTTPS stands for SSL secured. Installing an SSL certificate is hence an effective way of securing your data from breaches.
- Backup data regularly.
This involves taking a similar version of data and storing it elsewhere. This data can be used for future renovation in case of loss of original data. Everything considered crucial is backed up. You are advised to run data backups frequently. You can store away this data in hard drives, CDs, cloud storage, etcetera.
Preventing data breaches by employing the measures above will help you safeguard your data. However, we must understand data breaches happen due to insider threats, extrusion by attackers, and negligence. A successful data breach against you is dangerous to your reputation.
This is especially when dealing with data belonging to your clients. If you were breached and data belonging to your clients was exposed, this would tarnish your reputation, and you stand to lose confidence from your clients. This article has therefore introduced you to effective ways you can use to prevent data breaches. They have been tried, tested, and approved. For the safety of your data, use them