As technology continues to change with each new innovation and invention, it can feel overwhelming and nearly impossible to stay on top of every breakthrough. It may not seem like it, but technology affects every business now in our ever-increasing technological world. To cut through all the noise, we spoke with Scott Richman, the CEO of Nerds Support, who told us the essentials every small business owner needs to know. Nerds Support is a managed IT services and solutions company based in Miami that provides small and medium-sized businesses with IT support since 2004.
Simple, preventative measures go a long way
Even the smallest and youngest of businesses have options that will help protect their growing company. It is important to make sure to take these simple preventive steps as soon as possible to ensure your business starts off on the right foot. Among these important measures, and perhaps one of the easiest to implement, is multi-factor authentication.
Multi-factor authentication is a security measure to protect accounts by proving that the person logging in to the account is the person they claim to be. When a person logs into their account, that is called “authentication.” There are a few ways multiple-factor authentication works. Some of the more popular ways include utilizing your phone number by sending a code, or an authentication app that you log into to approve the request. Using multi-factor authentication is a simple and effective way to deter potential hackers and keep your small business safe.
Educate your employees
Educating your employees on how to spot, identify, and avoid phishing attempts and scams is one of the first steps to preventing data breaches. According to Scott Richman, “educating your employees on what not to click on is 99%” of mitigating a threat. This number is corroborated by reports done by other companies. And Cisco reported that 86% of companies had at least one person click on a suspicious phishing link.
Regularly educate and refresh your employees on what suspicious links look like and what not to click on. Oneway experts recommend judging employees’ knowledge is to test them by sending a fake phishing attempt. This low stake test allows small business owners to know how well their employees can spot malicious links.
Invest wisely – and early
Investing in your IT resources early on is the smartest choice. You do not want to wait until a disaster strikes to start preparing. Scott Richman noticed that “nobody wants to spend money on technology until there’s a breach.” And waiting to protect yourself can be costly for your business.
According to a report from IBM, the average cost of data breach is over $9.4 million. However, the sooner you catch and contain a breach, the less money you lose. Companies that identified and contained a breach within 200 days saved over $1 million. To help fund your IT department and prevent a breach from happening, small businesses should utilize a line of credit from Idea Financial. Investing your money wisely, early on, will help protect and grow your business.
Utilize outsourced IT
For a small business, it might seem daunting to invest in IT. There are options to outsource your needs to help protect your company. Utilizing managed IT services like Nerds Support takes all the headaches out of having a dedicated IT department.
Scott says that “working with the right technology partner is key for any business, of any size.” Nerds Support provides their services and solutions to small and medium sized businesses in several sectors, including financial, accounting and wealth management.
Look to the future
With so many advances in technology popping up daily, it can be hard to know where to look for the future. Artificial Intelligence is perhaps the most talked about innovation happening right now. Scott says that the revolution of AI can benefit small businesses by allowing for “scalability, knowledge (…) going to market faster.” He notes that most mistakes are human errors which can be reduced with the help of Artificial Intelligence. “I think the humans will be there to drive it,” he says, but artificial intelligence will be a secondary measure to validate things. And as the technology improves, it only becomes more accessible.
By keeping an eye on emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, utilizing simple, preventative measures that already exist like multi-factor authentication, and educating your employees to be hypervigilant of suspicious links, a small business owner can keep their business healthy and thriving. And outsourcing your IT needs to a dedicated company like Nerds Support will be beneficial for your long-term technology goals. To help finance these goals, check out Idea Financial and learn more about our term loans and lines of credit.