Steps you can take to secure your small business network

A local area network (LAN) is something that’s important for small businesses to put a lot focus on, regarding security and protection against potential vulnerabilities.

A local area network refers to a group of devices that share something like a communications line, or more commonly for most small businesses, a wireless server link.

A LAN can be used in a very small office with just a few employees, or a very large enterprise with hundreds of employees. Small businesses have faced an increasing IT security threat over recent years, and they often have fewer resources to put toward protecting their business, so they may take a DIY approach to IT and cyber security.

Protecting their network is one of the most important things to consider, and the following are some tips that can help them effectively do that.

Use Encryption at Wireless Access Points

So many small businesses still either don’t understand the threat of open wireless networks, or they haven’t taken steps to protect themselves. The best course of action that’s simple and inexpensive is to use WPA2 encryption, which is one of the best available options.

Also important with your wireless network is hiding your SSID.

You don’t want any information in your SSID that identifies your business or location, or that provides any pertinent information.

Keep Up-To-Date

Another thing that is so easy yet so often done by small businesses is just remaining up-to-date. The more you can stay up-to-date with all available security protections, the better off you are.

If you don’t update regularly and you stick with old forms of security and protection, you’re leaving yourself vulnerable because more than likely, hackers have figured out how to get past these safeguards.

Protect Your Firewall with a Password

Most small business routers already include some type of firewall protection, and you can usually update them or change them by logging into your router. It’s important for businesses to realize network firewalls aren’t the same as a network firewall.

Also important with firewalls is to use password protection. If you maintain your default password for your router firewall, it’s more than simple for hackers to look that information up online and break into your network.

While you’re creating a new firewall password, make sure also to disable access from outside your business network.

Network Scanning

Use a LAN scanner to determine where potential threats and vulnerabilities exist. Choose a comprehensive LAN scanner that will look at everything including not just network devices, but also mobile and virtual environments.

Choose software or tools that show the current status of your network security and show you where risks exist, as well as outlining how they can be remedied before a threat presents itself.

These certainly aren’t the only steps you should take as a small business to protect your LAN, but they are some of the easiest to implement, and most are also either free or low-cost. These are things you can do almost instantaneously to protect your small business against threats.

 

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