Think your business is too small or niche to be vulnerable to hackers and identity thieves? Think again. If individuals are being targeted to get a few extra bucks out of their PayPal account, even startups with the tiniest of budgets are great marks. It’s imperative that you keep your data safe, and even more important that you protect the data of your customers. This starts from the ground up.
There’s a lot of misinformation about data safety out there, and it’s a must to separate fact from fiction. As a small business, you probably have a shoestring budget and seemingly more pressing matters than comparison shopping cloud technology or data system management. However, consider these rules your pillars for a secure business. They need to be considered no matter how hectic your schedule may get.
1. Know the laws in your region
Depending on where you do business and the kind of data you’re handling, you might be legally required to follow certain steps. This is especially noteworthy if you have clients’ medical data on hand. If you don’t have an HR person on board, outsource it so you’re keeping things legal at the bare minimum.
2. Understand cloud vs. traditional pros and cons
A lot of people shy away from cloud storage because they don’t think it’s secure. However, 99.9 percent of the time it’s going to be a lot more secure than any type of storage you can manage on your own. Starting with cloud storage is much easier than transitioning to it, and your startup is in the perfect place to get this going.
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3. Don’t underestimate your insurance needs
Even if you do embrace the cloud, you probably have some hard copy data still floating around. Work with an insurance agent to make sure every possible disaster is covered. For example, flood insurance isn’t required outside of FEMA flood zones, but the majority of floods actually happen outside those zones. Most basic insurance packages don’t cover Acts of God.
4. The earlier you catch a breach, the better it is
Many of the worst breaches in history wouldn’t have been that bad if they were caught earlier. You need to have SOPs in place to regularly check for security. It’s just like with a health crisis: The sooner it’s spotted, the easier and more inexpensive it’ll be to address.
Safety should always come first in any business. Are you sure your ducks are lined up neatly?