What this means for your organization is that improving your enterprise technology infrastructure and strengthening your cloud security are likely at the top of your priority list now. If they aren’t, or if you believe you haven’t made sufficient progress this year, here are three steps to quickly and securely optimize your network.
1. Your First Defense: End-Users
Your end-users are critical to your network and cloud security. Unless your end-users understand the cyber threats facing your business, your network will never be secure. Here are two things you can do about it.
Educate users and establish protocols
Ensure that your end-users understand the importance of protecting your company data, and provide regular refresher training and security updates. Be clear about whom end users can approach with security concerns, and set out user-friendly, jargon-free protocols in writing.
Highlight email security risks
Statistics show that 94% of malware attacks occur by email, which means that all end-users should know how to spot malicious emails and safely dispose of them. Make this part of end-user training.
2. Monitor a Single, Cohesive Network
It’s easier to monitor one streamlined network than multiple networks across numerous offices. So, how do you set up a cohesive network? Two things you can do are:
Use SD-WAN technology
Software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) services allow you to unify a network across multiple data centers, office locations and cloud-based applications. Whether you’re working over two offices or you’re simply trying to unify your data centers, SD-WAN technology is the next natural step for you.
Manage company permissions
This involves limiting access to your company’s most sensitive data. It’s crucial that you modify permissions so that only authorized personnel can read and edit certain files. With a single network such as SD-WAN, you can control these permissions from one point, which gives you a single, very transparent management structure.
3. Secure and Encrypt Communications
While unified communications (UC) has its benefits, it throws up unique security challenges. Be honest — how often do you send confidential or sensitive information by email or instant message? Chances are, you do this more than you realize. To fully protect your enterprise technology infrastructure, secure all company communications, including faxes, emails and instant messages, at three specific stages:
Our advice? Encrypt your files and sensitive data, especially if you’re sending it over the cloud. Partner with a UC provider who can manage permissions and host your UC in a FedRAMP-certified facility like ours. This is especially important if you operate in a heavily regulated industry such as finance or health care where data compliance is critical.