Where brands share their insights. What's This?

How to Master Productivity and Cybersecurity at the Same Time

Some of the most effective things you can do to increase security can also boost efficiency at your company.
How to Master Productivity and Cybersecurity at the Same Time
Image credit: Shutterstock

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Brought to you by Entrepreneur Partner Studio Staff

When it comes to cybersecurity, your own employees may be your biggest risk. Dell’s 2017 End-User Security Survey revealed that 72 percent of workers would share an employer’s sensitive information if it meant doing their job better.

Though the survey focused on larger businesses, for small businesses the stakes are high: You don’t want to hold your workers back, but a data breach can have severe financial consequences and expose your business to legal liability, making it difficult to grow or even maintain your business.

Some of the most effective things you can do to increase security can also boost productivity—and involve everyday behaviors. How employees connect to Wi-Fi, answer email, or use company-issued devices all play an important role in both work efficiency and security.

You don’t have to slow your employees down to keep things safe. Instead, there are measures you can put in place that will help protect your business. At the very least, these few things may help you sleep more soundly at night.

Have the right tools.

Dell’s Small Business Technology Advisors recommend protecting small businesses with the latest tools. This includes solid endpoint protection. Even if you’re trusting a cloud service provider to store your sensitive files and applications, you should study up on the protection they provide.

Here are a couple top tools for protecting against threats.

  • McAfee Small Business Security—Protect your business PCs, smartphones and tablets against the latest online threats, viruses, malware, and data loss. Keep your business and customer data secure with email, web and firewall protection.
  • Mozy— Mozy encrypts every file as it’s sent over the network, and it also encrypts the information stored at its secure data centers. To prove the integrity of its endpoint protection services, Mozy successfully completed two strict audits, including a HIPAA-HITECH SSAE 18 Type 1 audit. Combining Mozy with McAfee Small Business Security provides multi-layered protection from Ransomware attacks. 

Set policies and enforce them.

Once you have the right software in place to protect your network, you need to put your security policies in writing and have all employees sign off on it.

If you have an on-site IT team, have them draft policies for themselves and your end users to keep your network safe. If you’re contracting IT to a third-party provider, make sure you have in writing what employees need to do to safeguard your data, including password policies and guidelines for how lost or stolen equipment needs to be reported.

Every employee should also be asked to sign a Security Agreement certifying that they understand that the use of computers and mobile devices is for business purposes only.

Be very clear on just how much employees can sign on to personal email accounts at work. Let them know whether they can use public Wi-Fi to access confidential company information. Make sure they know that using a VPN such as McAfee’s Safe Connect is critical to preventing security breaches while using public Wi-Fi services.

Consider setting group policy preferences at the server level that will force employees to set complex passwords and change them often, as well as locking down rights to folders.

The more you can do to error-proof your server, the less likely you’ll be to experience a major security breach.

Train your employees.

When it comes to protecting your network, training can make all the difference. You can access courses online, but the specialized information you need to share probably should be handled live.

You could create a video of any on-site training sessions and share them with all remote employees, as well as anyone who begins working with you in the future. This will ensure everyone is on the same page, thereby increasing productivity.

A basic version of a training course could include creating and safeguarding passwords, detecting suspicious links, spotting malicious downloads, and anything else that regularly stands to put the orderliness and security of your work at risk.

Pay close attention to threats that are catalogued by sites like McAfee and news alerts about current scams. When that information comes to your attention, send an email to everyone in your organization so that they’re aware of it. This small measure can make a big difference in not only keeping your network and its connected devices safe, but in ensuring the efficiency of the workday.

Dell is devoted to equipping small business owners with the tools they need to stay safe. In addition to selling the hardware you need to keep operations going, their U.S.-based Small Business Technology Advisors can offer advice on software and best practices for protecting your data and applications. They create a personalized solution for each partner and remain available for any questions you have moving forward. Contact a Small Business Technology Advisor today at 877-BUY-DELL.

Click here to learn more about how Dell can help your small business.


More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Are you paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.

Latest on Entrepreneur