There is a common myth where people believe cyber-attacks only affect big organizations, but cybersecurity statistics from 2018 reported that 43% of cyber attacks targeted small businesses and startups.

One of the major challenges for anyone who is launching and growing a startup is guaranteeing and protecting its data integrity, availability and confidentiality.

It doesn’t matter how small your business is — it could still be vulnerable to complex cyber threats and risks.

As business owners, we know that our information security defenses are not to be taken lightly. Cybercriminals, unethical hackers, and internet crime are increasing each year and it might only take a little hole in your app or network to be in danger.

We know the first steps of any business are difficult, especially because we don’t count with high assets to invest in all the fields we need. This generally involves creating the slightest safety network infrastructure and applications, making it easier for cybercriminals to target us.

In this article, we share 5 cybersecurity tips to improve the information security posture of your organization!

1. Build an atmosphere of awareness on Cybersecurity Risks

Cybersecurity is not exclusively a matter of interest for the business owners. All employees of any level must be aware of the cyber risks in order to minimize any type of attack. Usually it’s hard to understand and recognize a cyber threat because it involves technical concepts that employees probably still don’t know.

Evaluate the overall consciousness of employees in information security matters and implement security awareness training for all employees.

2. Always backup and encrypt your data

Formalize a backup strategy based on the criticality of your information assets. Create your backups on-premises and off-premises to increase the availability of your organizational data.

Implement strong encryption on laptops and smartphones; these devices are lost or stolen very often. Encrypting your devices will highly prevent the risk of confidential data exposure.

Cloud storage service providers are practical for this function but you need to find the right one that guarantees you the availability and regulatory compliance of your information assets. This will facilitate the good performance of a disaster recovery plan.

3. Maintain your software and hardware up to date

You need to keep your operative systems and applications up to date in all the devices of your company. A functional Patch Management Program for startups will ensure that information assets will be protected for most recent cyber dangers.

Software and hardware security updates are vital, never ignore them.

The same tip applies to all the smartphones you or your employees use for business purposes. Applications should be updated, and all devices must encrypt sensitive information.

4. Invest in cybersecurity

Investing in cybersecurity is a vital component of your enterprise — it can cost you even more money if you don’t take the necessary precautions.

If you have little idea of the technical and operational concepts of cybersecurity — it's always a wise decision to hire a cybersecurity expert that guides you in the process.

In addition, it will help measuring your company’s information security risk posture, which is one of the first steps needed to design an adequate information security program.

5. Test the preparedness of your cybersecurity defenses

Understanding the information security risk posture of your company, will assist you be more prepared to anticipate and minimize any cyber-attack. A certified professional in cybersecurity with sufficient time, sophisticated resources and skills will identify and exploit a weakness in your network.

They will do what a cyber criminal would do; trying to get access to your sensitive data and identifying the weak points where you need to focus your attention.