Cybersecurity checklist to protect your online business: a priority for MSMEs in their post-COVID digital transformation

The cybersecurity industry reported that there were 14 billion attempted cyberattacks in Mexico during 2020. In addition, it estimated a 72% increase in these types of attacks in 2020 compared to 2019.
Cybersecurity checklist to protect your online business: a priority for MSMEs in their post-COVID digital transformation
Image credit: Depositphotos.com

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This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

There are two things that have increased exponentially over the last year: the digitization of the economy, and online cybersecurity threats. Although the latter may seem intimidating, they should not discourage entrepreneurs from transforming or launching their digital businesses, as long as they have the right tools and partners to help protect their business and customer data.

The cybersecurity industry reported that there were 14 billion attempted cyberattacks in Mexico during 2020. In addition, it estimated a 72% increase in these types of attacks in 2020 compared to 2019. Unfortunately, MSMEs are not exempt from this type of attacks; in fact, 83% of cyber attacks that occurred in the first half of 2020 were directed at micro, small and medium-sized companies.

With these types of attacks becoming more and more common, companies of all sizes must protect themselves from their potential impacts. However, small business owners often think that their websites are not susceptible to attack; the reality is that automated attacks don't discriminate.

It is common for MSMEs to consider that their website does not have valuable information for potential attackers. However, even a small business website can contain sensitive information such as usernames and passwords. Even if the website does not store this type of information, it could be used to spread malicious software or malware . Also, some attacks can block access to the page completely.

As in all aspects of a business, planning, strategy, as well as selecting a good partner, can be the keys to being protected and helping to prevent cyberattacks from affecting the online presence of small businesses and data. of your customers.

As more MSMEs connect to the internet, they can take steps to protect their website and their valued visitors. At GoDaddy , we are committed to helping Mexican entrepreneurs and small business owners understand the importance of this issue and protect the integrity of their businesses through a number of security tools that can make a difference. Here is a checklist of five key elements to start protecting your online business:

Image: Depositphotos.com

  1. Install an SSL certificate for your website : Having an SSL certificate is an important first step because it helps to encrypt the transmission of business and customer data from the website to the servers. An SSL certificate creates a secure digital channel on your website to prevent cybercriminals from seeing the usernames, passwords, credit card numbers and other valuable information of your customers, who will feel even more protected when the icon The padlock appears at the beginning of your URL. Additionally, search engines, like Google, prioritize sites that have an SSL certificate.
  2. Make sure you have a firewall or firewall : a firewall is a tool that helps prevent malware and DDoS attacks. It is a system that acts as a gateway for the data that flows between your website and the internet, and its main function is to prevent unauthorized systems from accessing your data. Using a web application firewall helps identify attempted attacks that try to insert malicious code or prevent the website from performing its normal functions.
  3. Executes scanning and cleaning malware: scanning and cleaning of malware can help a web site back to work if there is a security issue that affects you . Businesses may consider further protecting their online presence by using website security services, which provide continuous monitoring and can identify virus attacks as they occur, and quickly begin to fix them.
  4. Keep software and systems up-to-date : In addition to updating software, updates often contain security enhancements based on the latest known attack attempts. This is important because there are automated attacks that detect the pages that have not been updated to attack them. If you use a content management system like WordPress, make sure to update your site's plugins as well.
  5. Use strong passwords : It may seem obvious, but the probability that companies will be hacked due to weak passwords is usually much higher than we think. Make sure your passwords are strong with a combination of random letters, numbers, symbols and that they have no obvious relationship to each other. Use different passwords for different websites, and consider using a password management tool to help protect them, while still making them accessible for use. And never share passwords with another person.

Each of these measures can help further protect your website against a cyberattack attempt. Taking the time to ensure that your website complies with these security measures can be one of the most valuable investments of time and resources you can make for your business and your customers.

With more micro, small, and medium-sized Mexican businesses connecting to the internet, and increasing their online presence with social media and e-commerce, paying more attention to protecting your online business and your customers' information will be becomes a critical component that you and your employees must actively safeguard. As e-commerce continues to grow, we are still here to accompany Mexican entrepreneurs and small business owners on their digital journey and help them create, grow and manage their business online safely.

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