Last year was not a great year for data security, especially when you take into account that some of the biggest data hacks of 2019 have cost businesses billions of dollars in Australia alone. Whether you’re running a global venture or a small local business, there is no denying that the threats in the cyber world are very real and that you need to prioritize network and data security in 2020 and beyond. Now that hackers and scammers are becoming more experienced, and now that they are utilizing advanced technologies to break into corporate data stores, your goal should be to combine the tried and tested security methods with innovative security measures.
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These include artificial intelligence and advanced network monitoring, but also the meticulous education and training of your staff, among other key solutions. With that in mind, let’s take a look at how you can enhance network and data security in 2020 and what to expect going forward.
Leverage artificial intelligence to boost security
Artificial intelligence is quickly becoming commonplace in every industry in the world, helping business leaders and governments to overcome cumbersome challenges, cut costs, and minimize risks. The cybersecurity industry is no different. In 2020 and beyond, we will see a rise in AI-driven hacks, ransomware, and social engineering as well, which is why companies need to respond by utilizing artificial intelligence to boost their security measures.
To battle this threat, and to keep all sensitive information safe, companies will have to use artificial intelligence to identify security vulnerabilities, spot fake news, and deal with deep fakes. Following the same principle, even small local businesses should start using artificial intelligence to find weak spots in their security systems, and act preemptively to strengthen their IT infrastructure.
Focus on employee education
Of course, advanced technology can only do so much, especially when you consider the fact that your employees can be your biggest liabilities. Artificial intelligence might be able to identify firewall issues and it might be able to recognize acts of social engineering, but your employees require meticulous education and training pertaining to cybersecurity best practices in order to help keep your network and business data safe. Remember, it only takes one employee to inadvertently give away a piece of information for your brand reputation to get ruined.
This is why one of your top priorities in 2020 and beyond should be to educate your team members on proper data security procedures. Be sure to create an easily-digestible cybersecurity policy and outline the rules and codes of conduct that every employee will follow in the workplace. Next, bring in external cybersecurity experts to conduct workshops and training sessions with your employees, in order to really put all of that information into practice.
Integrate comprehensive monitoring systems
Another crucial element of a secure IT infrastructure and a safe business network is the ability to monitor and control all network activity in the office. As a business leader, you need to utilize innovative tools, such as a secure web gateway solution that can give you a comprehensive overview of your entire network, and provide you with features necessary to retain as much control over that network as possible.
This network monitoring tool should allow you to monitor and inspect all incoming traffic, control and minimize access to all non-work-related websites, minimize data leakage and eliminate regulatory risks, all the while helping you optimize bandwidth usage and more. The result is a more stable and secure business network that leaves nothing to chance and gives you absolute control over the flow of information.
Boost the security of all company devices
The modern work environment thrives on technology, meaning that your employees are using everything from laptops and PCs to IoT devices, smartphones, tablets, and more on a daily basis. Every one of these devices is a potential security risk if you don’t protect them against outside attacks and unwanted entry in general.
To prevent unauthorized access to these devices and their data, be sure to encrypt all information that is leaving your network. Next, enable multi-factor authentication on all devices and all platforms that your team members are using, and employ a password management tool that will help elevate password security.
Combine software and hardware firewalls
Finally, in 2020 we will see a rise in hardware firewalls because of their ability to keep a business network safe. Software firewalls are essential for every device in your company; however, you need to optimize them for the device and the needs of your employees, and not just rely on them as an out-of-the-box solution. Likewise, software firewalls might no longer be enough to keep your data secure, which is why you should consider implementing a hardware firewall as well in order to put a physical device between your network and the outside world, which will help keep every device safe.
The online world is becoming a more dangerous place for companies with each passing year, and in 2020 and beyond, we will witness technology being used to steal sensitive business data on a scale like never before. Be sure to implement these solutions into your operation in order to stay one step ahead of the game.