IT security, also known as Cyber Security, is important in order to protect and defend all categories of data against cyber criminals. Their aim is to steal your information and compromise it in order to gain profit or put your business at risk. These cyber criminals are only getting smarter and more tactical, slowly becoming more resilient to several cyber defence methods. Businesses that are not using any IT security are unable to defend themselves against cyber attacks and malware programs and potentially exposing themselves to cyber criminals who prey on vulnerable systems and networks.
Cyber Essentials is a type of government scheme which aims to protect your business against most prevalent cyber attacks through obtaining this recognised accreditation. This is not only why IT security is important but it also shows your potential clients that you are a safe business to work with. Risks of cyber attacks and data breaches or theft is greatly reduced which will encourage clients to want to work with you.
As more and more businesses are working from home and are relying on insecure networks and systems, it has caused an increase in both inherent and residual risk. For many businesses IT security has taken a backseat causing poor configuration of cloud services and the use of outdated security programs which enables cyber criminals to perform successful cyber attacks on your organisation. This is worrying especially as these cyber attacks are becoming increasingly sophisticated and resilient to conventional cyber defence.
Using an antivirus software or firewall is no longer enough to securely rely on and requires a higher level of security in order to put a stop to these cyber attacks.
What is computer security and why is it important?
Computer security refers to the protection of computer systems and networks from unauthorised use or access. With the introduction to GDPR back in 2018 and other data security laws, ignoring cyber security issues is no longer an option. There is no pattern or specific demographic to these attacks meaning that no business is safe and we all need to be using multiple types of computer security in order to fully protect ourselves from these sophisticated cyber attacks. This is why computer security is important in order to protect your data from cyber criminals who will use it against you whether it is through phishing, ransomware or malware attacks that all aim to steal valuable and intellectual property or data (1).
Fundamentally we need to be:
- Educating staff
- Backing up data
- Perform regular updates
- Use antivirus protection and firewall
- Use strong passwords
- Use secure networks and systems
- Enable two factor authentication
Why is data security important to a business?
Some of the most common data that businesses store are:
- Bank or credit card details
- Telephone numbers
- Health records
This is only some of the basic information which most businesses will keep about you on their records (2). There are very specific requirements that all businesses must adhere to, in accordance with the Data Protection Act, in the way that they manage your information in order to prevent any data breaches and promote adequate data security. These requirements are in place to ensure that data is used only in a specific and agreed way, only stored for an agreed period of time, kept safe and secure, use of data abides by the law and follows the outlined data protection rights.
Data enables businesses to manage their clients and customers accordingly. It holds important information about their clients needed to perform their services. For example, address details may be used to send a package. Data security ensures that this sensitive information is stored securely by the business and allows them to continue delivering their services/ products without unnecessary interference.
So why is it important to secure data?
The requirements are set out in place to ensure that businesses keep their staff, client and customer data protected. But why is it important to keep data secure? It is the businesses duty to ensure that all information is kept up to date and stored safely to avoid any potential data breaches or cyber attacks.
If a business were to fall victim to a cyber attack, there is a huge risk of data being compromised, stolen or deleted by the attackers. If there are no procedures in place to ensure that data is stored securely in the first place or to perform regular back-ups, you will not be able to regain access to this data easily if not at all. This is why data security is important to a business and why it is important to secure data.
Unfortunately many organisations continue to fall victim of cyber attacks. However, there are several methods & tools that you can implement to prevent your organisation from suffering and compromising its data. For more information on Cyber Security or Cyber Essentials and ways to keep your organisation safe speak to our IT experts by calling on 0121 289 4477.