Three Tips to Maximize Your Company’s Email Security

Three Tips to Maximize Your Company’s Email Security

In many ways, 2022 has been a record-breaking year. Unfortunately for us, most of these new records haven’t exactly been the most positive changes. Inflation is at an all-time high, a new economic crisis is popping up every week, and we’ve had more political turmoil than we can handle. With these circumstances impacting us all, the rate of cybercrimes has begun to steadily increase.

Even only focusing on the third quarter of 2022, around 15 million data records were illegally exposed through data breaches. This number is 37% higher than the previous quarter, demonstrating how rapidly cybercrime is building. Going into 2023, your business should do everything it can to ensure both your employees and your company data are as safe as possible.

In this article, we’re going to move through three tips that will help you boost your company’s online defenses for this coming year. As the vast majority of data breaches occur within email accounts and from misuse of emails, we’re going to dive into how to improve your company’s email security.

We’ll cover the following tips:

  • Hold Awareness Training
  • Invest in Anti-Virus Software
  • MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication)

Let’s break these down further.

Hold Awareness Training

The vast majority of data breaches are caused by human mistakes. In fact, over 80% of all data breaches come from a human element, such as misuse of email or human error in giving away critical details by accident. In short, if your employees aren’t trained, then you’re leaving yourself wide open for attack.

Throughout the year, you should regularly give cybersecurity seminars, helping to train your employees on the very best practices that they need to take into account when working at your business. Often, the largest your business is, the bigger of a target it will be. Especially if you’re a small or medium business, your team may have no knowledge of cybersecurity training.

Without this, you’re leaving yourself open to a data breach event. Teach them about the importance of strong passwords, how to spot phishing emails, how to respond to a cybersecurity event, and that they should regularly change their passwords. Instilling good digital habits may have an upfront cost, but will pay off in dividends going forward.

Equally, you should make sure that your employees understand every single aspect of their email. Make sure that they have knowledge of email signature security and are using a reputable provider. If there isn’t a level of security built into their signatures, they could be copied or falsified.

Give your employees a crash course in everything that they need to know. Next, regularly brush up on their knowledge by hosting smaller meetings where you question them on the best practices. Many businesses send out fake phishing emails to help with this training.

Invest in Anti-Virus Software

Many email providers will give every account on their platform a high level of protection against phishing and scam emails. The entire spam folder is specifically designed for this. Platforms like Outlook and Gmail have fantastic security for your employees. However, just because they do have a level of defense, does not mean that they’re impervious to attacks.

It’s a fact of the working world that phishing emails will absolutely arrive in your inbox from time to time. The only factor we can control here as business owners is the amount of spam that arrives to our employees. How we control this is by investing in anti-virus, anti-phishing, and anti-ransomware software.

Partnering with a cybersecurity company can help you to build up an additional layer of defense. Many world-class security providers will offer a further level of email control. This will monitor all emails that come in and out of the business, looking for signs of malicious intent.

If anything is flagged, it will be cataloged and then prevented from arriving in the intended inbox. From there, depending on the provider, the email will either be destroyed or passed to your head of security. They will be able to assess the contents of the email, deciding whether or not it is indeed spam.

Tools like these radically reduce the total number of spam and phishing emails that arrive in your employees’ inboxes. With a much smaller quantity of these emails arriving to them, they’re much less likely to commit a human error which leads to a data breach event.

MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication)

Multi-factor authentication is where a user has to verify that they are indeed the one that is attempting to log into their account whenever they try to log in. While you can create preferred devices that are already verified, the best MFA is triggered every time someone tries to log in.

For your employees, MFA is going to be a pain to incorporate. Every time that they try to log into their business accounts, they’ll have to verify their identity on another device, often their mobile. This will add a few seconds to every time they need to log in.

While that may seem frustrating, MFA is one of the best possible ways of reducing the likelihood of an attacker entering your business accounts. While it is certainly possible for an attacker to phish an email and password from your employees, there is a much smaller chance that they can break into two devices simultaneously.

The need to verify your identity via MFA ensures that you have an additional layer of protection within your business. This is a leading method of preventing unwanted personnel from accessing your accounts and all of your company data.

If you haven’t already, be sure to enlist your entire company in MFA.

Final Thoughts

Investing in cybersecurity for your business is one of the most effective ways of helping your company flourish next year. Although cybersecurity might seem like an empty threat, it is rapidly becoming one of the largest causes of business setbacks an organization can experience.

Beyond just losing access to business data, a data breach exposes private client and financial records, which can lead to the whole organization going under. Data breaches are one of the leading motivators for small businesses that go bankrupt, with these events needing a huge pool of resources to fix.

In order to best prepare your business for 2023, we recommend that you follow the tips that we’ve outlined in this article. With them, you’ll be on the right track toward keeping your business and all its employees as safe as possible this new year.

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Three Tips to Maximize Your Company’s Email Security