Businesses and organizations depend on email for various purposes such as internal collaboration, invoicing clients, and communicating with suppliers. For most companies, email is an indispensable communication tool.
Sadly, as digital security threats continue to rise, communications via email can put your business at risk. Undesirable elements can spread malware and send spam via email channels. Any potential risk can put your business in a dire situation if you don’t prioritize email security.
Here are several best practices to consider in order to ensure superior email security for your business or organization:
1. Incorporate Two-Factor Authentication
One way to boost the email security of your company is to utilize two-factor authentication. Generally, this involves the addition of an extra layer of protection to all of your accounts. Today, almost every email platform provides this particular option.
An advantage of two-factor authentication is that it can stop a potential hacking threat even if your password is compromised. Hackers won’t be able to proceed since they need to enter a code before accessing your email. In most cases, you’ll receive such codes via another email address, SMS, voice calls, or time-based one-time password (TOTP) applications.
Once you decide to employ the services of a managed IT service provider (MSP), the IT professionals on their team will make sure that only authorized individuals can access your business emails. Depending on the plan you’ll go for, measures such as encryption or even multi-factor authentication will prevent unwanted access to your accounts.
If you want to keep your business email in check at all times, turning to a reputable managed IT services company in Sacramento or your current location would be a good starting point.
2. Create Timely Email Backups
Regular backups and archiving will enable convenient access to all business-related emails and data even if there’s server downtime, accidental deletion of files, or storage limits. Timely recovery of lost email is a must for smooth business operations and less downtime.
With that in mind, you should invest in a dependable backup service so your emails and documents are safe at an off-site location. This would allow you to keep all data secure in case an unpredictable event occurs, be it server failure, a natural calamity, human error, hardware malfunction, or virus infiltration.
3. Utilize Unique Passwords
Easy-to-predict passwords such as birthdays of family members or commonly used number sequences can be a risk to the email security of your business. Weak passwords are typically what makes most hacking-related breaches possible in the first place.
To safeguard your business from a potential security breach, it’s best to encourage employees to update their email passwords regularly and opt for unique ones so hackers will have a difficult time figuring them out. A password with a blend of uppercase and lowercase letters along with special characters and numbers usually works best.
4. Organize Training on Cybersecurity Awareness
Regular training for your employees is one of the most effective practices to improve email security for your business. Doing so will keep your employees up to date on any potential phishing emails they might encounter.
Small businesses are prone to security threats since many owners believe there’s less chance for them to be targeted compared to big enterprises, but it’s the opposite nowadays. A number of small companies face a higher risk for security attacks since they don’t invest in anti-phishing software or provide the right information to their staff members.
With proper training, your employees would know how to deal with suspicious emails. During the session, some of the crucial points to emphasize are the following:
- Create strong passwords for all accounts.
- Remember to update passwords regularly.
- Avoid opening business emails on mobile phones.
- See to it that business and private emails are kept separate.
Employees should also watch out for obvious signs of phishing emails, such as evident spelling mistakes and a public email address by the sender. Additionally, always watch out for links to unknown sites and impersonal introductory lines.
5. Encrypt All Emails
One of the email security practices worth considering is encryption. Doing so would help protect company and employee data alike. Any business should consider encryption of emails, even small ones or startups.
Most encryption services involve security measures that won’t make it difficult to send or receive important emails. After the encryption process, the recipient will receive the email with data protection in place. Generally, it works by requiring users to log in to view the encrypted message. When sending emails this way, you have better control—for instance, you can revoke access should you accidentally send the message to the wrong recipient and monitor access to all of your emails.
Encryption services are essential for businesses due to the increasing cases of malware attacks resulting in compromised emails. Using encryption prevents attackers from accessing sensitive business emails and protects data over the cloud.
6. Integrate An Antivirus Program
Antivirus software or service is your best protection against potential virus and malware attacks before they can cause any damage. In most cases, malware tags along with phishing emails and triggers problems once an employee clicks on and opens it. Antivirus software works by scanning all emails for signs of malware content and removing them right away.
Top-notch applications can scan all emails for any questionable activity as they arrive at your inbox. Also, take note that service providers often require a monthly subscription. Consider this a practical investment for the safety of your business emails.
7. Ensure Proper Password Management
One of the practices to enhance email security is better password management for your business. Aside from utilizing solid passwords, it’d be best to recognize the importance of efficient password storage. With that said, a password management system is a good solution to take advantage of.
A password management system helps your employees create secure passwords and pinpoints employees with weak password choices. Additionally, it functions as storage for all passwords. Your employees no longer need to write down passwords on a piece of paper or keep a list of them on a note-taking app.
Keeping your business secure should always be your priority. Getting the best email security for your company often requires a multi-level approach using several of the effective measures discussed above. Using only one option might not guarantee adequate protection in the long run.
A combination of awareness of the latest cybersecurity threats and the right software and services will give you a better chance of keeping your business safe from potential security attempts. Utilizing as many layers of defense as possible will make it harder for hackers to cause any damage to your organization.