Q

Arming small businesses against security threats

What are, in your opinion, the Top 10 security threats for small businesses using Microsoft Operating Systems and Office Applications on personal computers connected to the Internet?

What would you recommend as best practices for a small business to defend their personal computer systems to security threats while connected to the Internet?
I think the top threats are untrained users and uncaring management -- that's how things become vulnerable in the first place. Beyond that, it's the typical malware, malicious internal user, outside hackers, etc. In a nutshell, upper management needs to understand the threats/vulnerabilities, create (or at least support the creation of) policies and allow a reasonable budget for technology purchases to enforce those policies. The technologies and processes would include antivirus and anti-spyware protection, firewall, personal firewall software, automated Windows Updates, strong passwords for each users and data backups that are tested and kept offsite.

This was first published in August 2004

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