When it comes to cyber security, a company’s biggest threat is often an internal one.

This makes sense since someone who already has access to the network would have the easiest time hacking sensitive information. The funny thing is – it’s usually the people that know the least about cyber attacking that cause the most harm.

Most cyber attacks occur not from malicious intent, but from well-intentioned people who accidentally do something they shouldn’t have. Since people work with technology on a daily basis, and it’s easy to get complacent during the typical course of doing one’s job.

Below are 5 preventative measures your business should take to decrease the risk of a cyber security breach.

  1. Have a Cyber Security Policy and Conduct Regular Trainings

While human error cannot be eliminated completely, a sound policy can minimize the risk of a cyber security incident.

Teaching things like password management, explaining what phishing is, and properly locking devices is key to preventing a major mishap.

Employees should also be on-boarded and then trained regularly to stay up-to-date on the latest and greatest information.

  1. Get Proven Cyber Security Software

Protecting your business from cyber threats is as much about technology as it is human performance. Educating your employees should be your first priority, but then you should take the necessary precautions to safeguarding your network.

Choosing the right software with network monitoring can make or break a cyber security program. This sort of software handles things like patch management, which closes gaps that cyber hackers often exploit, and automatic vulnerability assessments to protect your network from weak spots.

  1. Remove Unnecessary User Privileges

A well-run company should only have a few key personnel with access to potentially sensitive information.

Far too often, companies make the mistake of leaving unnecessary users access to things that could cause serious harm, whether by accident or through malicious intent.

User privileges are something that should be handled with care and appropriately assigned based on required work tasks.

  1. Control Executable Actions on Your Network

Sometimes even the brightest and best-trained employees slip up. Hackers who use phishing techniques are getting better and better at disguising themselves as friends, co-workers, or relatives. Even worse, these emails look like they might actually be coming from reputable sources.

In the event that someone falls victim to these tactics, having a means to control what’s allowed to execute on your systems can save your company’s sensitive information. Only approved programs should be able to run while on the network and everything else should be blocked.

  1. Monitor Employee Activity and Let Them Know About It

Nobody likes their every move being watched. That said, it’s still important to at least track and be able to monitor your employee’s activity from time to time.

People act differently when they know they’re being observed by management. That could mean thinking twice about clicking on a suspicious link or visiting a website that may contain harmful malware.

You don’t actually have to stand over their shoulders and watch their every move, but you should at least inform them that their actions are being tracked.

Summing It All Up

It’s impossible to know which internal users could cause destruction to your systems or fall for a well-concealed cyber attack. Preventative measures are the only things that stand between you and a possible leak of highly sensitive data.

It’s your responsibility to keep you, your employees, and customers safe with a sound cyber security program.