Welcome to part one of our short series on cyber security. Cyber security is something which is often in the back of all of our minds, in terms of both how can we prevent a breach and what to do should our systems be breached. This is then brought to the forefront when large-scale cyber attacks make it to the news, such as the recent attack which hit the NHS. There are, however, relatively simple low or no-cost steps your business can take to prevent or stop an attack on your systems. We will cover a few of these steps in this blog series.
Cyber Security and the NHS
The recent cyber attack infected over 300,000 computers in 150 countries, including the NHS and FedEx. Security experts have suggested that the attack on the NHS could have been prevented. Microsoft released a security update, after they were made aware of a potential vulnerability, two months prior to the attack. Had all PC’s been updated then this would have stopped the ransomware from taking hold. However some PC’s were not able to be updated, as it was found in December 2016 that many NHS trusts were using an obsolete version of Windows which stopped being supported in 2014.
What can you do?
There are some simple steps you can take to protect your business from becoming a victim of a cyber attacks. These include:
Following the steps outlined above will decrease the chances of you falling victim to a cyber attack. The above are only examples; there are other methods that can be used. It is important to stay vigilant. The approach to effective cyber security is to adopt clear and simple procedures for staff to follow. These will set out the actions they need to take (e.g. ensure updates are installed and check instructions received), and slot in alongside their regular work. Cyber security systems are constantly evolving to keep us safe from attacks; therefore it is wise to review your procedures and policies regularly. The Police offer support and guidance regarding cyber security via the Action Fraud website and the Government also offer a 10 step summary.
In our next blog we will look at more actions you can take to guard against breaches of your system.
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