Local IT consultant Fusion IT continues its sponsored editorial column on Huddersfield Hub. In this edition, Support Business Development Manager RICHARD PAYNE explains why every local business should make improved internet and email security their number one new year’s resolution.

Businesses today, perhaps including yours, rely heavily on the internet and email to conduct their operations, which is why it is essential to ensure that these systems are secure.

And there are few better new year’s resolutions than challenging yourself and your members of staff to pay closer attention to security provision.

Due to the nature of our work with clients from throughout Yorkshire and beyond, we know better than most that cybersecurity threats are becoming increasingly sophisticated, so businesses must take proactive steps to protect their networks, data, and customers’ information.

In this article, we will discuss several strategies and good habits that businesses should adopt in 2023 to boost their internet and email security, including two-factor authentication.

  1. Firewall – One of the first things businesses can do to improve their internet and email security is to implement a firewall. A firewall is a system that acts as a barrier between a private network and the internet, protecting the network from unauthorised access. Firewalls can be hardware-based or software-based, and they can be configured to block certain types of traffic or to allow only certain types of traffic. This can help prevent cybercriminals from gaining access to a business’s network and data.
  2. VPN – Another important strategy for boosting internet and email security is to use a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN allows employees to securely access the business’s network from remote locations, such as when working from home or travelling. This helps to ensure that all communications are encrypted, protecting against eavesdropping and other forms of cyberattacks.
  3. Two-factor authentication – Another crucial strategy that businesses can use to boost internet and email security is to implement two-factor authentication. This is a security measure that requires users to provide two forms of identification before accessing a system or network. This can include something the user knows, such as a password, and something the user has, such as a mobile device or security token. By requiring two forms of identification, two-factor authentication makes it much more difficult for cybercriminals to gain unauthorised access to a business’s systems and data.
  4. Changing passwords – Another security measure that businesses can implement is regularly changing passwords. This can help prevent cybercriminals from guessing or cracking passwords and gaining access to a business’s systems and data. It is also a good idea to encourage employees to use strong passwords, which are harder to guess or crack.
  5. Software and protocols – Additionally, businesses can also use security software such as antivirus, anti-malware and intrusion detection/prevention systems. This kind of software helps to protect against various types of malware and viruses, including spyware, adware, and ransomware. Businesses can also use security protocols such as SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and TLS (Transport Layer Security) to encrypt data that is transmitted over the internet. This helps to ensure that sensitive information, such as credit card numbers and personal data, remains confidential and protected from cybercriminals.

As we can see, it is simpler than you might think to take better care of your business’s email and internet security.

It is crucial that all businesses take proactive steps to protect their networks, data and customers’ information from cybercriminals.

Implementing a firewall, using a VPN, implementing two-factor authentication, regularly changing passwords, using security software and security protocols are some of the strategies that businesses can use.

And by taking these steps in 2023, businesses can help to protect themselves and their customers from cyberattacks.

Need some further guidance? Please call us on 0333 241 4123 or email info@fusionmanageit.co.uk for professional, impartial advice.