AZCOMP Technologies IT October 2019



Empowering Small Practices to Deliver the Best Care


The foundation of good cybersecurity is always going to be technological. Without the proper defenses in place and a team of experts monitoring your system, you’re more likely to experience an attack and suffer serious damage as a result. In a world where 60% of small businesses close within six months following a data breach, investing in your network security is akin to investing in your livelihood. However, simply hiring the best doesn’t cover every gap in the system. Hackers know that the human aspects of a network are often more vulnerable than the computers. Some ne’er-do-wells attempt to trick team members into giving up access to sensitive information through a process known as social engineering. Others lurk in plain sight, hoping to catch people who are unaware of their presence. In each case, there’s nothing you can do from a technological standpoint to prevent a criminal from attempting to sneak their way into your data stores. What can do you, though, is train your people on how to ensure those attempts end in failure. Today, I’d like to show you how to do just that in regard to two major threats. PHISHING Phishing, as the name implies, is an attempt to lure users into unwittingly giving up access to private networks by prompting the user to click on a link that contains software designed to penetrate and exploit the network. Now, nobody is going to click on a link that says “Get your data stolen today,” so the hackers disguise the intent. They make every attempt to make communication seem authentic, sometimes going so far as to convincingly replicate the design elements used in communication from major banks. There are a few telltale giveaways, though, that an email isn’t what it appears to be. Misspellings, vagueness, and offers that are too good to be true abound in phishing emails. So, too, does a sense of urgency that makes you think clicking is a life-or-death proposition. Teaching your team how to spot these signs is crucial, but coaching them to never click on links in emails they were not expecting to receive is even more important. These unsolicited approaches, which can also come via text and social media, should always be regarded with skepticism. 2 TIPS FOR BETTER CYBERSECURITY That Won’t Cost You a Cent

If you really want to create a team who won’t get fooled by phishing, it’s easy to run test phishing emails and see who gets hooked. Using that data, you can actively train people who may be susceptible to future attacks. PUBLIC WI-FI Free public Wi-Fi can seem like a godsend when you need to log online in a pinch. However, those unprotected networks can go from lifesaver to life-ruiner in a hurry. If you’re able to jump onto a network for free without so much as a password, there’s nothing stopping anyone from doing the exact same thing. You should never, ever log onto anything important on public Wi-Fi, and you should educate your team to do the same. Even password-protected networks at restaurants and other public places should be treated with caution. Some places that cater to workers provide unique passwords for each user, but if they simply slap the password on the door, it’s not really for customers only. The danger of public Wi-Fi networks illustrates the unique dangers that arise from our cloud-connected age. It’s amazing that your staff is able to access work records, customer-facing email portals, and other tools no matter where they are or what type of device they have access to, but that benefit also comes with a responsibility. Anyone accessing company data outside of the office has to be able to practice safe internet strategies. You should consider making two-factor authentication and strong passwords mandatory for all team members with remote access and provide thorough training before turning over the digital keys. Tips like these will help upgrade your human cybersecurity to the latest and greatest version. Your tech isn’t 1.0, so your coaching about that tech shouldn’t be either. –Byron Adams

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