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Securing computers, servers and wireless networks
Proper online security can protect your business from internal threats, such as staff who open email attachments infected with viruses, and external threats, such as hackers who steal information and commit other cybercrimes.
Steps to guard against external threats to IT systems
- Install anti-virus and anti-spyware software, including spam filters, and ensure they are turned on and updated regularly. Read more about how to secure your computers using anti-virus and anti-spyware software.
- Enable wireless or wi-fi network security and change the default password immediately because most default passwords are well-known to hackers.
- Install a software firewall, normally included in IT security bundles or operating systems.
- Choose strong passwords involving a combination of numbers and upper and lower case letters. Change passwords regularly.
- Back up data regularly and store copies of backups off-site. Read more about cloud computing for business.
Steps to guard against internal threats to IT systems
- Allow only authorised staff to access IT data and systems.
- Put IT policies and procedures in place.
- Be careful about employees connecting portable devices to work systems.
- Be alert for spam claiming to be from 'trusted' email senders — for example, banks do not do business by email.
- Think before opening attachments or sharing information to ensure data protection.
- Store data carefully — choose who has access to it and decide what devices you allow staff to connect to your network.
- Password protect your website so authentic users can access the site.
To build customer trust, use secure sites that prevent unauthorised parties from 'listening in' on electronic conversations. These sites have a secure socket layer (SSL) certificate indicated by an https address bar. The 's' in https means secure and tells users your website is safer than the common http address bar.
- Learn about resources to improve the cyber security of your business.
- Read the 5 steps to better online privacy from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.
- Find out about protecting your website from hackers.
- Read more about computer crimes affecting small businesses.
- Find out how to create a digital strategy for your business.