Today is your annual reminder to make sure all of your accounts are secure by improving your password habits. This doesn’t just apply to your personal accounts—it is also seriously important for any business accounts including email, website, file server and social network credentials.
What’s the harm?
Small businesses are especially vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks. Attackers view small businesses as easy targets, and small businesses have a harder time recovering. A cyberattack can cost you new business and harm relationships with your existing customers.
What are good password habits?
- Make your passwords unique. A reused password means that if one account is compromised, all of the ones using the same password are now vulnerable.
- Use strong passwords. Strong passwords are hard to guess, long, and complex.
- Turn on multi-factor authentication. Whenever multi-factor authentication is available, turn it on. With multi-factor authentication, it takes more than a password to get into your app or your account; it takes verification from a device, such as a cellphone, that’s likely to be on you at all times. With multi-factor authentication, your accounts are still protected even if an attacker finds out your username and password, as any app developer will tell you.
How do I keep track of all these hard-to-remember passwords?
Good password habits mean that your passwords are hard for a human to remember or guess, which makes it difficult when it comes time to actually use them. Password managers to the rescue!
Password managers make using (and sharing!) strong passwords easier than ever. A password manager is software that stores encrypted passwords for you, so you only have to remember a single password—the one to log into your password manager!
Many password managers also include the ability to securely share passwords across teams. This makes it possible to give and revoke access to the most up-to-date credentials with a click of a button.
What else can I do to keep my business secure?
Websites can also be a major security concern for businesses. There are a number of ways you can keep your website secure:
- Install an SSL certificate. SSL certificates allow for secure communication between your website and its users. They protect the data your customers entrust to you. Also, without an SSL certificate, browsers such as Chrome will warn users that your website is not secure.
- Keep website software up-to-date. This includes both backend and frontend software, for example: PHP, WordPress, plugins, themes, libraries, frameworks. Developers frequently release updates to software to handle known vulnerabilities that hackers exploit – keeping up-to-date makes sure that your website is protected.
- Scan for malware and other vulnerabilities. The same way your computer can get infected with malware, your website can too. Scanning uncovers issues before they get worse.
Also see the additional cybersecurity resources below!