data security services

How to Prevent Data Security Breaches

Introduction:

For businesses in Corpus Christi, having a data security plan is essential to protect their data from malicious cyber attackers. Without a well-defined security strategy, organizations can become vulnerable to attacks that could devastate their operations and reputation. Partnering with reputed data security services providers like Layer One Networks is the fastest means to mitigate potential risks and stay safe from cyber threats.

In this guide, we will cover the following:

  1. What is a data breach, and what causes it?
  2. How are data breaches carried out?
  3. What are the potential risks and consequences of a data breach?
  4. What steps to take to prevent it?

What is a Data Breach, and What Causes it?

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A data breach is a security incident in which an unauthorized individual has accessed sensitive, confidential, or protected data without the owner’s consent.

There are different ways that people can breach data, whether accidentally or intentionally. Common causes of data breaches include:

  • Weak password protection
  • Downloading malicious software or viruses,
  • Phishing scams and other types of social engineering tactics
  • Insider threats from current or former employees.
  • Losing devices containing sensitive information
  • Injecting malware or other malicious scripts into web pages

How are Data Breaches Carried Out?

Data breaches can happen to all sizes of organizations, and the methods by which attackers can breach data range from simple to complex.

However, according to Layer One Networks security experts, the breach occurs in 5 common steps.

  • Step 1: Recon: Attackers gather as much information about the target organization as possible – such as IP address, open ports, and Software programs used.
  • Step 2: Exploiting Vulnerabilities: Once attackers have identified any vulnerabilities in the system, they can exploit them to gain access.
  • Step 3: Gaining Access: Attackers use malicious techniques such as phishing emails and malware to access the organization’s system.
  • Step 4: Escalating Privileges: Once attackers have gained access, they will try to escalate their privileges by exploiting additional vulnerabilities to achieve higher system access levels.
  • Step 5: Data Theft/Destruction: Attackers will then use their privileged access to steal or delete data or damage the organization’s systems.

What are the Potential Risks and Consequences of a Data Breach?

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Data breaches can result in many severe consequences for organizations, including:

  • Financial Losses: 

In 2022 the average cost of a data breach in the United States was around $9.44 million more than the global average cost of $4.35 million. Although this figure includes breaches connected with huge companies, it can have serious financial ramifications for even the smallest businesses.

  • Reputational Damage: 

Data breaches may cause distrust in customers leading them to switch to another company. Continued data breaches can result in a significant negative impact on the reputation of an organization as well as its brand value.

  • Productivity Losses: 

Once a data breach has occurred, organizations need time to investigate, fix the issue and restore data. Spending this time can lead to significant productivity losses as employees cannot access the information they need or use the systems they rely on. On average, fixing a data breach can take around 3 to 4 months of a security team’s time.

  • Legal Implications: 

Organizations can also face legal implications due to a data breach, including fines and lawsuits.

  • Ransom Demands: 

Ransomware is a type of malicious software used by hackers to encrypt data and extort money from victims. The hackers refuse to decrypt the data until the ransom is paid.

  • Privacy Compromised: 

Depending upon the type of data that is breached, customers or clients may have their personal information compromised, leading to identity theft or other fraudulent activities.

What Steps can be Taken to Prevent Data Breach?

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Data security is a must for any business in today’s digital world. However, organizations can do a few things to prevent data breaches.

Below are some effective cybersecurity prevention tips by data security services experts.

  • Restrict Access:

You should restrict access to data and systems to those who need it by setting up password managers, two-factor authentication, and other access control measures. Limiting access can minimize the chances of a breach.

  • Use Strong Password:

The most common cause of data breaches is weak passwords, enabling hackers to gain access easily. Furthermore, people often reuse the same passwords on multiple sites, making them even more vulnerable. 

You should also set up password policies and enforce strong, unique passwords across all accounts.

  • Keep Software up-to-date: 

Always use the latest version of your software and keep all applications, operating systems, and plugins updated. These precautions will help patch any known vulnerabilities in the system which attackers can exploit. Furthermore, ensure the automatic updates are turned on and regularly check for any new patches that need to be applied.

  • Use Secure URLs:

Users should only connect to websites that use secure HTTPS connections (instead of HTTP). HTTPS URLs are encrypted, making it much harder for attackers to access the data. Also, it is a good practice to only click on links from known sources.

  • Regularly Monitor and Audit: 

You cannot permanently deploy just one data security strategy to protect your business against all threats. For simple reasons, cybercriminals are highly motivated to steal data and constantly develop new tactics to breach the best security protocols and firewalls.

IT security services experts recommend regularly monitoring and auditing the networks to identify any security loopholes. This monitoring will enable you to quickly detect any malicious activities that have occurred to take preventive measures.

  • Educate and Train your Employees: 

Believe it or not, most data breaches today do not occur due to sophisticated hacks but usually because of human error. All it takes is one wrong click on a malicious link for an organization to fall victim to a data breach.

Layer One Networks, the best IT security services in Corpus Christi, TX, recommends the following steps to help protect your organization against cyber threats:

  • Train your workforce to identify phishing emails, malicious links, and other social engineering attacks.
  • Encourage employees to report any suspicious activities, no matter how minor they may seem.
  • Enforce a strict policy against the use of public Wi-Fi for business purposes.
  • Install anti-virus software on all corporate devices and instruct employees to only download apps from official app stores.
  • Do not leave work with devices unattended or unlocked.
  • Lock all filing cabinets and folders which contain sensitive information.
  • Make sure all backups are regularly tested so you can be sure your data is secure in the event of an emergency.
  • Never give out or share access to your devices, accounts, or networks with anyone.

Related Reads: Difference between Cloud and Network Security.


Join Hands with the Best IT Security Services to Prevent Data Security Breaches:

Data breaches can cause significant harm to both individuals and businesses. To protect against ever-evolving cyber threats, you must be vigilant and take preventive measures. Something most companies learn after experiencing one.

Layer One Networks provides comprehensive data security and managed IT services solutions in Corpus Christi, TX, to help protect your critical data and systems from malicious threats. We can help you develop and deploy a cyber security plan that meets your individual needs and train your employees to stay vigilant and identify potential threats.

To learn more about our IT security services, contact us today.

IT services

Major Signs Your Company Needs Help from An IT Service Provider

Introduction:

Dependency on technology is essential for business success today. Whether you are a large enterprise, a small business, or somewhere in between, you are using technology to deliver the services or products that keep your business profitable, efficient, and visible.

But what happens when the technology you rely on fails? Without optimized systems and up-to-date IT solutions, your business will struggle to meet the demands of your customers and stay ahead in the marketplace.

Managing your IT infrastructure with limited knowledge and experience can have serious repercussions. It will not only keep you from devoting the time and energy needed to focus on growing your business but could also cost you more money if the wrong solutions are implemented.

When you find yourself in this situation, you most certainly need help from a professional IT services company to ensure your business will operate at its full potential.

Below are some signs indicating you need a professional IT service provider immediately.

When you want to kick-start a digital transformation project, you need an IT services provider who specializes in this area. They will help you identify the necessary changes and create deployment plans that include user training, data migration, and other tasks needed for the successful implementation of digital solutions.

Signs Your Business Needs IT Services Company

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Your Systems are Outdated:

You may find yourself in a situation where your current systems are not meeting the demands of your business. Outdated software and hardware, legacy systems, and lack of integration can stress your team. This may result in slowing down operations and hampering employees’ productivity.

Professionally managed IT service providers support the business transition from legacy systems to modern IT solutions. From securing new solutions to implementing them and providing ongoing support, IT support companies have the skills to keep your systems up and running smoothly.

Your Cybersecurity Measures are Lagging:

If you were busy setting up multiple systems and installing hardware for your business, your cybersecurity had likely taken a backseat. Without a solid cybersecurity strategy to withstand modern cyber threats, your business can suffer from a breach, data loss, or any other security incidents causing your clients to lose faith in your business.

A cybersecurity plan offered by a professional data security services provider involves a selection of security tools that can detect, monitor, and prevent security issues. It also involves educating your staff on safe cyber practices, such as phishing and social engineering, to minimize the risk of a cyber attack and loss of sensitive information.

Your Business is Growing Too Fast:

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If your business has considerably grown in the past few months, you may need to add more resources to keep up with the demand. Also, your existing network infrastructure and hardware may lack the speed and capacity to support the increased workload.

A growing business should have an IT infrastructure that is easily scalable and can be modified or upgraded quickly as needed. An imbalance between your workload and resources will often mean inefficiency, lack of productivity, and poor customer service.

To accommodate all of your IT needs during fast business growth, you will need the help of a professional IT support team with experience in designing and implementing an infrastructure that can grow along with your business.

Your IT Staff is Overwhelmed:

Even if you have your dedicated IT setup, your team may need more knowledge and skills to manage certain IT tasks. Or your strength may be inadequate to keep up with the demand of your business growth.

A growing business generally needs a big team of IT professionals with different specialties and experience to provide around-the-clock support. But this setup is homologously expensive and only a viable option for some businesses.

So what do you do if you cannot afford a full-time IT staff? The answer is to offload some of your IT management needs to an experienced IT service provider. Not only will this cost you less, but you can get the technical skills of an entire team to solve all your IT issues causing less stress on your team.

Your IT Issues are Causing Down-Time:

Using sophisticated technology for operations and support can benefit your business. However, it can result in costly downtime if you cannot troubleshoot or fix issues as soon as they arise. In most cases, this happens because you need more familiarity with the technology and thus need to either consult manuals or reach out to vendors for assistance.

The longer your business remains out of service, the more time you and your team will put in to compensate for the lost hours. And at times, it may also happen that your business will never be able to recover from the downtime.

By relying on an experienced IT service provider, you will get a team of professionals who can detect and fix IT issues quickly and with minimal disruption to your operations or customers. This way, you can stay competitive without incurring any major losses.

Your IT Strategies are Not Coherent:

Businesses generally use IT services to grow their business, but they need help understanding how it can be correctly implemented to reach their strategic goals efficiently. With the ever-growing technology and constant evolution of options, it is often difficult for a business owner to know the scope of options available to create a competitive edge.

To make the most of this growth, you need an IT consulting firm to educate you on the latest hardware and software options and how to use them for your benefit. They can also help you develop the right strategies to prevent delays and bottlenecks in the future and align IT solutions with your business objectives.

Your Business is Going Digital:

Digital transformation helps businesses redefine their operations, making them more efficient and cost-effective. However, if the transformation takes place without proper roll-out plans and strategies, it can cause chaos in your business operations and damage your staff morale.

When you want to kick-start a digital transformation project, you need an IT services provider who specializes in this area. They will help you identify the necessary changes and create deployment plans that include user training, data migration, and other tasks needed for the successful implementation of digital solutions.


Related Reads: What are fully managed services and why it is important.


Strengthen Your IT Infrastructure with a Professional IT Services Company:

IT-Support-Layer-One-Networks

When running a business, dealing with technical issues is the last thing you want. However, without the right IT solutions, you may be more involved in tackling IT issues rather than focusing on what matters most – driving the business forward.

Do not let your IT troubles slow down your business. Instead, get in touch with Layer One Networks, the leading IT support and services provider in Corpus Christi, TX. Our IT professionals specialize in solving companies’ technical problems with long-term cost-effective solutions. 

Contact us today to simplify your day-to-day operations and enable your business to stay competitive.