When most of us think about safety, we think about the importance of it in our homes. There are crime stories constantly in the news and a seemingly endless number of scams doing the rounds. So it’s understandable that most of us are focused on keeping our families safe from harm. But many of us forget that our businesses are just as large as targets for theft, fraud and other criminal activity.
When you are in charge of a business, you will often think that the worst thing that could possibly happen would be a failure to meet the expectations made of you. But being robbed of your belongings or having cash stolen from your safe can be just as distressing. And this concern shouldn’t stop at cash businesses and those with valuable assets stored in a warehouse. There are plenty of ways that even an online marketing business can be defrauded of valuable time and money. Whatever type of business you are, there will always be someone out there looking for ways to make money from you.
Luckily, there are enough people out there that have suffered through these experiences. This means that, with a bit of research, you should be able to identify the key attributes of your business that could be attracting criminals. And then you should be able to identify the best ways to keep everything secure.
First of all, you should be thinking about very literal security. This means making sure that your business premises and processes are secure from potential intruders. Even with all of the technological advances out there, traditional theft is still one of the easiest ways for most criminals to make money.
As an online business, you may be hyper-aware of all of the security measures that you should put in place to keep your transactions safe. But while you are focussing on that, there may be criminals scoping out the valuable equipment that you keep under flimsy security in your office.
The security measures here are pretty obvious. You need well-locked doors, security cameras and alarm systems. You should also be thinking about any weak points that may be a potential point of entry for a criminal. Poorly constructed garage doors are a typical entry point, so an AutoRoll roller garage door could be the alternative that will provide you with peace of mind.
You might also want to think about the more cunning ways that criminals seek to gain access to a building. Security is not entirely about making sure that no one can jimmy your doors or smash your windows. It is also about making sure that only authorised individuals have access to your business. In this regard, you might want to think about the possible uses for security passes and guards at strategic points. Many businesses are now opting to use card scanners at their entry points, and these can be a great alternative to a full-time security guard.
If you think that you have all of the traditional avenues of security covered, then there is nothing to stop you moving on to the more contemporary security concerns. First of all, you should be thinking about your online work. With all of the hacking and surveillance scandals in the news, everyone is aware of the potential for their business to be exploited by holes in online security. But not everyone really understands how to patch over those holes.
You should, first of all, make sure that you have a well qualified IT guy. This may seem like skirting around the real point, but it is ,in fact, the best way to ensure your long term security.
When you or I research and install an antivirus, we are obviously doing our best. But for the most part we will be focussed on the other parts of the day to day running of the business. However, whilst we are doing this, there are constant advances and counter-advances being made in the field of online security. If you have an IT guy that knows his stuff, then it will be a large part of his day to day business to ensure that everything is functioning and up to date.
That said, you should also be researching some of the more unusual ways that people can steal valuable information from you online. First of all, you should remember the importance of password strength.
There is a sense in the media that the celebrity cloud hackings were down to the lack of security in cloud storage, but in fact they were a result of a brute force attack. This means that someone made an application that tried out hundreds of thousands of common passwords, and one of them worked. If the celebrities had been using more complex passwords, their information would be safe. Make sure your business doesn’t fall foul of the same mistake.
You should also be aware of the blurred lines between work and home as being a particularly weak point in your technological security. When people are working in an office, they are usually protected by all manner of secure internet connections. But if they take a work laptop out to their local coffee shop and connect to the WiFi, then they are in far more danger. There are services, such as VPNs, which act as easy and cheap disguises for your internet presence. They can be installed on all work devices, and they will ensure that you are not leaking valuable information as you sip on your latte.
Finally, you might also want to think about the importance of employee education. Of course, it is worth having one or two people on the payroll whose job it is to think exclusively about security. After just a few meetings to emphasise the importance of security, you will find that their vigilance is one of the most effective deterrents to criminal activity.