Tools and techniques for countering security threats

Just as there are many threats posed to your IT and e-commerce systems, there are also a number of different counter-measures available to you. It is important to consider the options for countering threats and put appropriate systems in place.
You can minimise the risks posed by unauthorised access through a combination of technology, procedures, policies and user awareness:

  • install a properly configured firewall for your Internet connection
  • make sure you have virus and content scanners for emails and attachments in place
  • ensure your systems (especially firewalls) are updated on a regular basis with patches and hot fixes to counter the latest known intrusion techniques

You can minimise the risks of viruses by a combination of user vigilance and awareness, and the use of anti-virus software. You should:

  • consider installing anti-virus software and updating it on a regular basis
  • treat email attachments with caution, as they are a common means of spreading viruses – staff should not attempt to open any suspicious email attachments and should treat emails from anonymous senders as suspicious

If your business uses wireless technology, it is important to protect files and information with appropriate security. For example:

  • Wireless equipment often has security default settings, but don’t assume that these are appropriate for your needs. Always ensure that such settings and configuration files are checked and changed where appropriate.
  • If you are handling sensitive information across a mobile connection, consider using a virtual private network (VPN) to ensure privacy.