Unlike large corporations that have IT professionals dealing closely with their cyber risks, small and medium-sized Swiss businesses often know very little about cyber security. They underestimate the risk of falling victim to an attack, and this is precisely what makes SMEs a particularly rewarding target for hackers. Time to take stock of the situation: run the AXA security check now. It will help you to quickly identify any deficits in your IT systems so that you can take effective measures.
Our free security check makes sense because it provides you with an up-to-date evaluation of your company's IT and internet security and identifies where action is needed. Regardless of the individual result, preventive measures are always worthwhile. From training your staff to using the most up-to-date software and robust virus protection, the guidelines below will help you to eliminate potential security gaps in your IT environment.
awareness: Most cyber attacks exploit users' lack of knowledge. Regular training in how to identify the latest threats helps your staff to handle the company's IT and data securely. Are you already familiar with AXA's cyber prevention service?
Guidelines: Phishing e-mails and malware are some of the favorite tools of cyber criminals. Binding rules for e-mail communication and internet use help to protect your company's sensitive data and applications.
Strong passwords: Define guidelines for staff to follow when choosing a password, e.g. use at least 12 characters, an automatically generated code or two-factor authentication.
Data backup: Implement a consistent backup routine in your company. This is imperative for securing important information over the long term.
It's equally important to ensure that you always store your backup copies securely and keep them entirely separate from the computer/network.
User administration: Careful administration of users and their access rights can make critical information much less vulnerable to attack.
Emergency plan: Reacting rapidly and correctly to a cyber incident is crucial due to the potential consequences. Take the right precautions by defining immediate forensic, legal, and communication measures for emergency situations.
Software: Use suitable software to close any security gaps. A firewall protects your systems against unauthorized access, and an anti-virus program increases the security of your data against viruses, worms, and Trojans. And don't forget: the more up-to-date your software is, the more secure it will be.
Updates: Only up-to-date versions of operating systems (e.g. Windows or macOS) and programs offer good protection. Always keep your software and any hardware connected to the internet up to date. The best way to do this is by activating automatic updates.
Hardware: Old computers for which software updates are no longer available should stay offline and ideally be taken out of service altogether.
In the event of a cyber attack, data that are subject to data protection law could be stolen and misused. To ensure that your company doesn't face criminal prosecution, these data must be protected in line with the legal requirements.
If a service provider in your network falls victim to hackers, malware or social engineering, this may also pose a threat to you and your customers, especially if you have digitally networked production processes or use a shared cloud. Make sure that your suppliers and business partners have the same security standards and use e-mail protection, anti-virus programs, etc.
The above measures will significantly minimize the security risk for your company, but there's no such thing as 100% security on the World Wide Web. If you become a victim of cyber crime despite all protection systems, cyber insurance from AXA at least minimizes your financial losses and offers support with crisis management and restoring data or systems, all so you can maintain business continuity.
Click here to read about our cyber insurance for companies.