Internal IT Security Threats Are Getting More Dangerous! Here’s How to Stop Them:
When thinking of cyber criminals, hacks, malware, ransomware, and all the other threats lurking on the Internet somewhere, you probably don’t automatically think of these as internal IT security threats. After all, the problems originate externally, so they need to work their way into your network. While this is true, the problem is many external threats actually make their way into business networks by someone within the network willingly opening a door for these scams and cyber criminals. No, most employees are not knowingly allowing malware and ransomware to infiltrate a business network, but instead, insider threats develop via a Trojan horse method. Something is disguised and then allowed behind the gates of your established firewall. So when it comes to stopping threats, which are increasingly growing more dangerous, here is what you need to do and how to stop them.
Top Tips to Prevent Internal IT Security Threats
It is important to go over what is expected of your employees with regard to network security. Your network security is only as safe and as strong as the weakest link. Sadly, the weakest link is often an employee clicking on something that they shouldn’t, such as an infected link, using a flash drive that is infected, or allowing their child to use a business computer, and then the child lets in a security threat that harms your business.
Because of all the possible threats out there, you need to conduct annual IT security training that goes over what is expected of your employees. This can include the basics, such as not opening emails from individuals they do not know and avoiding social media posts that might be infected.
You also need to make sure your employees understand they are not to allow their children (or anyone else, for that matter) to use their laptops and other company-issued electronics. This kind of education and training should happen annually because there will be some changes that happen over the course of 12 months (not to mention you will have new hires that will need to hear the information you are providing). And, of course, you don’t need to conduct the training yourself. You can bring in an external IT professional to handle the training, as they will be able to offer more enhanced information with concrete answers. Here at Charlotte IT Solutions, we can help assist with this.
Some companies choose to block out certain websites, such as social media services. Now, this practice originally started in order to prevent employees from using their time on social media services. However, this may not be the best practice for you, especially if you have employees who rely on social media to sell the company services and to interact with customers. The websites you block are up to you, but it is imperative for your employees to understand they are not to click on the links or posts of other accounts. How often have you heard of someone clicking on a Facebook ad for sunglasses or other services and then, days later, posting a message that says they were “somehow” hacked? The hacking is pretty obvious when you consider it, but it happens easily. You may choose to allow social media services on your network computers, but make sure everyone knows they cannot interact with the posts of other users while connected to your network.
Watch Out For Red Flags
You need to monitor how often individuals are logging onto your network when they are doing their work, and from what devices they are working. No, this isn’t designed to spy on employees. This is instead designed to help you spot red flags that are out of the ordinary.
Perhaps you notice a certain employee is logging on at random times of the day, or that they are using an IP address that is unusual, or even from out of the country. Even if the IP address is coming from within the country, if they appear with different addresses every few days, it can be a red flag. All of these signs are red flags that an external threat has gained access to an individual’s log-on credentials and is trying to siphon data off of your network. Consult your employees about this to make sure it isn’t them (they may not have been the ones that lost their network ID logins either, as that can be lost through any one of your employees).
Always take red flags seriously. The last thing you want to do is wave it off and assume it is nothing. No, you need to take the opposite tactic. Always assume a red flag is something serious and investigate accordingly. It’s better to be too cautious than not cautious enough.
It’s Time To Take Your Network Security More Seriously
While it is important for you to do everything in your power to protect your business from internal IT security threats, there are still areas where you will be exposed if you’re not partnering with a professional IT service provider. Of course, hiring a full-time, in-house IT professional is expensive, and chances are, you don’t have the kind of available budget to invest in such a person. Especially if you don’t need them at all times of the day and night. Instead, the better option is to partner your business with a managed IT services provider. With the help of such a service, you receive the same benefits as a full-time IT professional for a fraction of the price. Here at Charlotte IT Solutions, we strive to provide you with the highest level of IT protection. In addition, we will help enhance your network infrastructure, so you are set up for not only the present but the future as well.
If you are ready to take your network security to the next level, there has never been a better time than now to give our customer service staff at Charlotte IT Solutions a call or email. We look forward to working with you for years to come.