A climate of risk exists for both a business in relation to their IT. Businesses who rely on technology to run day-to-day operations have many TI risks to understand, monitor, and control. Changing aspects of IT mean that drastic things can occur. Small business owners need to assess risks to ensure they reduce any negative impacts. Risks in relation to IT can be put into five distinct categories.
This risk pertains to damage to equipment or unauthorized access to internal resources, such as servers, a computer room, and network equipment. Small businesses often overlook internal threats that can be catastrophic to security and company information. One way to protect against physical threats is to use security cameras that can observe sensitive areas of a business.
Compromising your internal network via the Internet is the biggest electronic threat to a business. This threat often occurs when hackers gain access to internal systems through your website. Phishing emails and attempts to install malicious software via social engineering are other types of electronic threats. A small business also needs to review IT security to ensure that data is not compromised. If a computer is compromised, then a hacker can take control remotely and so significant damage. The use of a firewall and anti-virus software will reduce many electronic threats.
The IT systems or infrastructure used at a business is not immune from failure. One common IT failure is the loss of a computer hard drive. The loss of data on a computer or server is easily preventable with multiple backups. One way to create a backup is to duplicate data in a second location. The best way to keep a backup is to move data to a cloud-based storage service.
The day-to-day operations of a business often rely on a constant connection to the Internet. Companies require Internet access 24 hours a day for every day of the year. Internet access is crucial for a business that relies on applications and data that is stored in the cloud. External forces can affect the connection to an Internet provider and often happen with little notice. An online business will be unable to function if a connection to the Internet is not available.
The risks to a business from human error cannot be understated. A simple mistake or oversight that has been made by an employee can have dramatic consequences. There have been many instances reported in the news about data being deleted that caused online services and websites to be inaccessible. Errors made by company personnel can be prevented when redundancies and oversight are put in place. Most times problems can be corrected by simply restoring data to a previous state.
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