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The Twelve Tips of Christmas for cyber peace of mind this festive season

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Follow Claritas Solutions’ twelve best practices to ensure you have a happy Christmas.

The first tip for Christmas: Assess the risks

In order to create an effective security system, you need to know where your organisation stands in terms of reliability of its security and what dangers it really faces. You can conduct an audit and use various security reports in order to gather the necessary data and statistics to make an accurate risk assessment and channel your security efforts into where they need to be.

The second tip for Christmas: Maintain effective security policy

Every employee needs to understand the importance of the role they play in maintaining security. One way to achieve this is to issue a security policy that everyone in the organisation must read and sign when they come on board. The policy should cover internet usage, email, social networking, passwords and information sharing.

The third tip for Christmas: Raise employee awareness

Employees could inadvertently cause major security breaches if they are not educated in best security practice. Educating employees not to leave their laptops and mobile devices unattended and to be aware of phishing emails can significantly improve a company’s cyber security. Increasing security awareness will significantly reduce the risk of a data breach.

The fourth tip for Christmas: Invest wisely in defence tools

Don’t cut corners when it comes to your company’s cyber security. Whilst defence tools may seem expensive on the surface, the cost is minor compared to the cost of a cyber-breach. What’s more, the cost of a cyber-attack is not limited to the fee demanded by cyber criminals; there are other substantial costs to your business including disruption to business, loss of sales and damage to reputation.

The fifth tip for Christmas: Keep software up to date

Many organisations use outdated software versions without realising that they often have critical vulnerabilities that attackers can use to get access to sensitive data. Our advice is to upgrade your software regularly. As with defence tools, saving money in this area could be detrimental to your business, the cost of an attack would be a far greater cost!

The sixth tip for Christmas: Encourage stronger passwords

A large number of hacks are due to weak and overused passwords, however recent research has shown that it can be detrimental to change them so frequently as users simply don’t put enough thought behind them as they anticipate another change soon after.

So what to do? Definitely change your password, but not too regularly. And use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols on a vague word or phrase that you’d not associate back to yourself.

The seventh tip for Christmas: Take steps to combat spam

Due to the rise of ransomware, and other types of viruses, spreading through emails, it is important to not only setup an automatic spam filter, but also to educate your employees on the danger of clicking unfamiliar links.

The eighth tip for Christmas: Be wary of USB devices

USB devices pose a major security vulnerability. They can be used to easily spread malware or steal critical data. Control and monitoring of USB devices is among data security best practices. You should definitely consider using automated USB detection and a blocking tool, or a more sophisticated dedicated solution.

The ninth tip for Christmas: Disable access on termination

Companies often do not bother deleting login information of former employees. As a result ex-employees retain their access to company systems enabling them to commit malicious actions such as data theft. As well as the main systems, ex-employees may have access to company social networks and external websites and accounts. Make sure all of these permissions are updated on termination.

The tenth tip for Christmas: Back up your data

Companies should always be prepared for the worst. Back-up your data off site or install duplicate severs to help prevent the loss of data.

The eleventh tip for Christmas: Develop incident response strategies

It is important to realise that cyber-attacks and security breaches can happen to everybody. Regardless of the size of your company or strength of your defences, it is a matter of “when”, not “if”. And when the incident eventually happens, you need to know exactly what to do. Having an incident response strategy in place will greatly reduce your response time and costs in the long run.

The twelfth tip for Christmas: Ensure collaboration on cyber security

Strong I.T. teams coupled with supportive management are the most resilient to cyber-crime. Cyber security needs to be on the board meeting agenda and embraced by the whole company. In addition, working in conjunction with a professional I.T. company, such as Claritas, will help you to quickly identify potential risks and determine the best security solutions for your business.


Take our simple steps to ensure you have yourself a very merry Christmas.


For more information or to arrange a no obligation security check-up, please contact: Andrea Olsen at Claritas Solutions on 08456 399 661 or at contact@claritas-solutions.com.