4 Easily Avoidable Security Errors That Could Ruin Your Startup

Updated 04-17-2017   Seventy-three percent of small businesses say a safe and trusted internet is critical to their success and that strong cyber security and online posturing is good for their company’s brand, according to a survey by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) and Symantec. The need for cyber security is generally the first line of defense for startups and established companies alike. However, startups may be setting themselves up for a security disaster without even realizing it.

There is more to securing a company than just ensuring your internet and files are safe from hacking.

Here are four avoidable security errors your startup may be making and how to fix them.

Using poor organization procedures

Companies need clear organizational structures in order to focus on their growth and bottom line. Clearly define the structure of your business from entry-level employees to upper management. However, remember that your data and security policies also need to be clearly defined and organized.

For example, create a system for backing up and encrypting your data and test the recovery process. Next, create a protocol for when a data breach happens. Decide who will respond to the public, how to inform customers and how a security crisis will be handled. The more prepared you are for a security mishap, the greater your chances are of surviving it.

Skipping outdoor security cameras

Monitoring the outside of your business can be just as important as the inside. Install a comprehensive security camera system like one by Lorex to monitor your business property from your home, on vacation or while in the field working with clients. Having access to video footage can also help locate perpetrators, recover stolen equipment and deter would-be thieves from robbing your company in the first place. Outdoor cameras are important to keeping opportunistic thieves at bay.

Ignoring relevant laws and best practices

Tech Republic warns that startups need the same level of protection, awareness or maturity as major competitors. That includes employing a customized privacy policy of how you handle security and customer privacy. For example, the FTC cautions that failing to safeguard customers’ sensitive information, like Social Security numbers, can leave businesses vulnerable to lawsuits. Consult a business attorney or consultant to review the relevant laws and best practices to ensure you’re following the law and safeguarding your customers at the same time.

Using antiquated payment processors

Taking payments in the field on a system like Stripe can help increase revenue, but doing so can also pose a security risk without the right process in place. Today’s standard chip-enabled card readers offer more robust protection than the card swipe system. Merchants can also be penalized and fined for not using chip-enabled readers, and it can leave you open to consumer lawsuits.

But aside from security issues with payment processors, there’s also an image issue. Using antiquated payment processors can diminish the perception of your company’s security. Left to choose, a consumer will pick the competition that has modern technology ensuring their online safety.

Some articles are written expressly for The Guinn Consultancy Group, Inc.  If they contain hyperlinks, it is for the benefit of the reader, and The Guinn Consultancy Group, Inc. does not receive compensation from the writer or provider of the article.

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