Your business is only as secure as how you store and manage your passwords. Often overlooked, passwords are the first line of defence to protecting your business from anyone and a strong password can often make the difference. However sometimes no matter how strong a password is they still fall into the wrong hands. How passwords are stored plays a vital role in the safety of your business and ensuring that only authorised users can access approved applications.
Having a secure method of managing your passwords is half of the solution, whilst 60% of businesses forget about this entirely, this puts them at a much greater vulnerability. By managing passwords safely in an offline file this will remove most risk of encryption and allow access for only those who need it. Another common mistake made by many businesses is monitoring who can access files and applications. Ex-employees are forgotten about once they leave the company however they may still know passwords for applications they had access to and 49% of ex-employees admit having logged into an account after leaving the company.
Once an employee leaves your company a full review of the access permissions they had granted should be carried out. Access should be terminated and passwords should be reset. Another important system to have in place is that current employees don’t share passwords with each other, this could be a way for a disgruntled former employees to access systems after an ‘unofficial share’ had taken place. This may be happen when catering for an emergency in someones absence an employee passes their password onto a colleague.
Internal security is just an important as external cyber security, businesses often do not account for safety within their business as they feel the only threat is from cyber criminals. The people who know your business best are your employees an it is vital to support them and trust them with your business but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be aware of the possibilities that may happen accidentally or maliciously.
There are several ways you can increase your security within your business. Firstly, create a system with your staff in which they change their passwords monthly for important systems and programs. This will give you a safety net in which previous passwords have expired and reduce the chance of being worked out. By training all staff and creating a security culture internally this will increase your security across the board. Secondly, using access and authority within programs allows you to grant access for colleagues whilst not having to disclose the password to them. This is a technique commonly used espescially for programs such as emails or social media managers. Lastly, by putting a secure management system into place, passwords can be stored and not forgotten in one place by one person. This creates ease of use and allows one person to have full control of who can use what password.
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