Is Your Supply Chain Cyber Secure?
5 Tips for Keeping Viruses Away

On May 12, 2017, the WannaCry Ransomware attack affected hundreds of thousands of computers in 150 countries. By far the hardest hit in the attack was UK’s National Health Service. Businesses are starting to reevaluate their cyber security measures, and for organizations in the supply chain sector, there’s too much at stake to simply delete your browsing history and restart your computer.

It’s not a complex or complicated process to keep your business secure but it needs to be done on a regular basis in order to ensure that heavy hitting viruses don’t come crawling into your systems. Here are five tips to help keep your online security strong and virus-proof.

Utilize a Reputable Anti-Virus Program

It all starts with making sure that your company has a reputable and effective anti-virus software program on all computers and even your mobile devices. A strong anti-virus program will be able to find anything and everything because they stay active and constantly monitor your computer and phone’s activity while your devices are on.

There are several free and paid programs out there to choose from like AVG Anti-Virus and Norton that are effective. Make sure to check with your IT department first before downloading a program as they may have a preferred program that will work best for your network.

Complete a Full Computer Scan

Most anti-virus software comes with the option of performing a quick scan or a full scan of your computer. The quick scan may seem like the better choice because it’s fast and easy but avoid selecting it and instead choose a full scan. A full scan of your computer may take a little longer to complete but it will ensure that the software is checking every corner of your hard drive for potential viruses or malware.

Make sure to schedule your full scans daily or, at minimum, weekly on an evening when your computer will be on but inactive.

Back It Up

Having not just one backup but multiple backups of everything that is on all of your company computers will give you the peace of mind that should something come around and wipe out some of your files, you will have a backup readily available to use.

Storing your data on an external hard drive is an additional backup method that is a great option. With it not being a part of an internal hard drive, it avoids the chances of being corrupted or affected. An offsite data storage and backup service with companies like Iron Mountain or CrashPlan is another option for keeping your files secure in case your external hard drive or other storage systems are a bit unreliable.

Be Password Aggressive

Easy passwords can be cracked by hackers faster than you can crack an egg so start using a proper password that contains a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.

Most passwords can contain up to 15 letters/characters, so avoid using your spouse’s, children or pet’s names, birth dates, or addresses and start getting creative. Avoid falling into the trap of using the same password for more than one account and remember to change it every two to three weeks. Keeping track of all of your passwords may seem complicated and tedious but a secure password management service like LastPass makes it practical and organized.

Always Maintain a Watchful Eye

Let your employees know about any current outside threats and to be careful with suspicious emails or websites they visit. Always maintain a watchful eye and have a solid plan in place for dealing with the potential impact of the next big cyber attack.

Preparing, communicating, and implementing a strategy with all of your staff and employees for the cyber security of your supply chain ensures that everyone is on the same page and your due diligence has been done. Cyber threats can cause irreparable damage to your supply chain operations, finances, and data. After something as huge as this last attack, it’s important to get everyone involved and take the steps required to keep your data secure because that is the only way forward in this digital economy.

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