Last month we spent a little time talking about your IT “breakfast” and foundation of your business—Backup. This month we want to keep the ball rolling and move ahead a few hours to talk about lunch. After all, your IT solution should consist of a well-rounded diet. By giving your network the variety it needs, you’ll find a strong, energized infrastructure that’s able to perform reliably day after day.

A healthy diet ensures you’re getting the proper nutrients you need to fight off sickness, stay focused, and perform well. In the same way, the “lunch” of your IT solution should focus on network security and safety. This meal should be lean enough not to slow down your network’s speed and performance with midday lethargy and powerful enough to keep things running smoothly while fending off viruses, malware, and cyber security compromises that might otherwise bring operations to a halt.

Network security has a few key groups that need to be packed into your IT lunchbox. Our first ingredient is your network’s firewall. Your firewall is your first line of defense between the world wide web and your company’s internal network. By configuring your firewall in accordance with best security practices and locking down any unauthorized access (such as policies that limit which websites are accessible from the office), you will dramatically decrease your network’s exposure to unnecessary risk. Your firewall is your network’s gatekeeper, so a secure configuration will pay in spades long term.

By adopting a more complete approach to your network security and safety needs, you provide your company with the immune system and resilience it needs to fight off harmful attacks.

Next up is your apple a day to keep malware away: a strong antivirus and layered security solution. Antivirus and layered network security work together to stop malicious items that may have snuck past your firewall or been accidentally allowed in by a user. This part of your lunch works to intercept and stop viruses in their tracks before they have the chance to create a serious infection and force you to restore from a backup or lose valuable time and productivity. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Last, but certainly not least, is your final line of defense. This step is the equivalent to making sure your IT lunch has plenty of greens to supplement the most nutritionally important area of your diet and security solution: user education and awareness. We can’t stress how important this has become as social engineering attacks have become ubiquitous threats that all businesses face. By educating your staff on best security practices and safety awareness, you can mitigate potential disasters before it’s too late. Phishing emails have become increasingly popular and often look unbelievably convincing. All it takes is one click on a phony signon page to compromise an email account, give the “all clear” to a virus to cripple your network, and in some cases, cause irreparable damage to your business’ credibility. If a user knows what to watch out for in advance, this type of attack is far less likely to succeed.

Your IT diet cannot consist of just one meal, and your lunch can’t consist of just one ingredient either! By adopting a more complete approach to your network security and safety needs, you provide your company with the immune system and resilience it needs to fight off harmful attacks.

Have questions on your firewall, antivirus and network security, or user risk position? Click here to contact us! We’d be happy to help you select something from the IT security menu and share some daily specials with you.

First published in our May 2019 IT Radix Resource newsletter