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Keep Your Data and Your Business Safe

Posted by: Today's Tip Contributor on June 10, 2010

Despite the hype around cloud computing and the promise of off-premise centralization of applications, data, and other computing resources, most small businesses continue to store a tremendous amount of information on local hard drives, portable USB drives, or even floppy drives. Such information is often highly proprietary and highly valuable to your organization—as well as to individuals who could potentially profit from getting access to it. Unfortunately, hackers are getting smarter, more brazen, and more sophisticated all the time, so it is more essential than ever to stay ahead of mounting security threats. Consider employing the following suggestions in your business.

• Back up your data. Don’t just back up data locally using the methods described above. Go with the hybrid approach by using a proven online backup service to augment your local copy.

• Protect files. Use encryption and password protection or both. Change your passwords frequently and use difficult passwords.

• Stay current. Keep Windows Office, antivirus, and any other installed software applications updated.

• Preserve the crown jewels. Lock up your laptops and drives if you leave them at the office. Or get a Kensington lock.

• Take Web security seriously. Web security should be treated with equal or even greater importance than physical security. For the most secure Web-browsing experience, use Firefox as your default browser. Do not save passwords in your browser. Install NoScript, a Firefox extension that blocks malicious scripts and tools such as Javascript, Java, and Flash from running, aside from on Web sites that you manually enable.

Using these tactics can help prevent internal and external data threats and keep your data—and your business—well protected.

Lucas Leonardi
Marseille, France

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