With the introduction of the new GDPR legislation, which comes into practice this month, it’s never been a more crucial time to ensure your business is protecting both the data of your employees and your clients.

Failing to adhere to the new regulations can result in hefty fines (up to €4million in certain cases) so before you unwittingly expose or suffer a data breach, follow our guide to take preventative measures now.

Avoid unknown email attachments

There is never a good reason to click on unsolicited email attachments. They will usually contain viruses, Trojan programs, and computer worms, all of which can attack your data and therefore your business.

If you are curious about a particular email, contact the sender to confirm the message contents before opening the email. If you are unfamiliar, however, it is always best to play it safe and delete the message. If you keep getting emails from the same sender, block the sender’s account and advise your staff to do the same.

It can also be said that educating your employees on standard online security would be extremely beneficial for your business. If all the staff understand the precautions that need to be taken to protect important data, then there is less likely to be cases of security breaches caused by human error or carelessness.

Prevent data loss

This is one of the most important parts of ensuring your data is always protected. There are many companies which can help eliminate the risk of data loss, such as Access Group who use tried and tested Disaster Recovery solution built on Zerto Virtual Replication. Using secure hosting companies is a key part of data protection for your business; you can share data between clients and employees with the knowledge that no matter what, your data and business are properly protected.

Install antivirus protection
One of the surest ways to ensure your business is kept safe from cyber-attacks is by installing antivirus and anti-malware software. It is advised to set the preference to update these protections often, at least once a week. Protect your data further from intrusions and infections by installing security patches for your operating system and other software programs.

Password protocol

Applying strong passwords is the easiest thing you can do to strengthen your security. Make sure that the passwords you use cannot be easily guessed, and make sure staff know not to share them with people not authorised. It is advisable to change your passwords regularly.

Additionally, make sure that all passwords are kept in one place, rather than being scattered around the office. A lot of the time, due to there being passwords for a number of accounts, staff will keep them on post-it-notes on their desks. While understandable, it carries a big security risk. Put all the passwords in one place, that requires a password for itself, and have it encrypted. It means that only those authorised to have access to certain accounts can do so.

Backup regularly

Scheduling regular backups to an external hard drive, or in the cloud, is a painless way to ensure that all your data is stored safely. Servers should have a complete backup weekly, and incremental backups every night; personal computers should also be backed up completely every week. It might sound like a lot, but having your data compromised is a very distressing experience. Having everything backed up means you have more control over what is lost, making a data loss experience considerably less traumatic.