5 tips to help keep your business secure
Your business is your livelihood, so we don’t need to tell you how important the security of your office is. However, there is a balance to strike. It’s no good turning your office into Fort Knox at great expense if, at the end of the process, you’re left with no stock or assets to protect. Likewise, ignoring the security of your premises and simply hoping not to be targeted has obvious pitfalls. So how much should you spend on keeping your office and its occupants secure? Well, hopefully less than you think. This article will cover five cheap, or even free, measures you can take today to give an instant improvement to your security and peace of mind.
1. Light It Up
This one is crucial. Burglars, particularly the opportunist variety, are usually nocturnal, and as such are likely to be frightened off by bright lights. Motion sensing lights are more than just a good way to light up the car park as you leave the office on dark winter evenings; they are perhaps even better tools for security than permanently lit floodlights. Think about it – if you’re working late and you see a light turn on in the car park of an office across the road that you know has closed for the evening, it will catch your attention.
Of course, motion sensing lights are simple deterrents, and don’t offer any real defence against determined thieves. It can also be quite difficult to ensure that motion sensors cover all the areas you need them to; before going ahead with the installation of new lights it’s always a good idea to get a second opinion from an expert.
2. Lock It Down
OK, we know, you don’t need to be told to keep your doors locked. This is a little more involved than just making sure the front door is locked before you go home. Firstly, you need to make sure that your locks (and doors!) are secure enough for the job. Secondly you should consider who has access to what areas of the building – if you keep any servers in your office, for example, there’s probably no good reason for anyone in the Accounts or Sales departments to have any access to your server room.
As you know, multi-factor authentication is becoming the norm in the tech world. For better or for worse, you’ve almost certainly encountered a situation where you’ve needed access to your mobile or your emails to log in to a website. This isn’t as common in offices, however. Alarm systems are indispensable for their ability to act as a second form of authentication. No lock is entirely un-pickable, so a good alarm working behind the lock is perhaps the best form of intrusion detection. Many alarms connect to the police or private security firms – while these may not be the cheapest options on the market, they are most certainly secure. If someone were to break in to your office, past your lights and your locks, you would definitely want an alarm system that both raised hell and called the police.
3. Keep Watch
If you keep any stock or valuable tools and equipment on your site, you really should think about installing a CCTV system. Not only are they the best deterrent for burglars, they also represent the best thing you can do to assist police in the aftermath of a break-in. If you’ve captured a burglar on camera, the chances of them being caught and convicted increase exponentially.
CCTV systems needn’t be expensive anymore. We’ve been installing CCTV systems for years, and we’ve seen the prices of high-quality kits tumble recently. However, just as with your motion-sensing lights, it pays to call experts like us to help you plan and deploy CCTV. The last thing you want after going to the expense of sourcing and installing new cameras is to find that your cameras don’t cover all the areas they need to. We’ve seen it ourselves when updating and re-designing CCTV installations for our customers; many of them already have lots of cameras around their building, but the area they cover is limited and leaves dangerous blind spots around entryways. Our engineers are hugely experienced at specifying camera setups to suit the customer’s building; no two installs are the same, so we always take the time to perform a full survey and draw up plans for you to approve before we start any work.
4. Tell Everyone
Train your staff. It’s as simple as that. Make sure that everyone working in your office knows all applicable security procedures. Implement clear and sensible policies, and make sure there is at least one person responsible for checking internal locks as they lock up the office at the end of the day. The policies you put in place will depend largely on the industry you work in – retail staff, for example, will need to be trained on what to do during a burglary. Similarly, office buildings should have procedures in place for what to do if unauthorised people enter the building.
5. Think About Data
This one warrants a whole article to itself, but it is worth mentioning here as well. Your data is your lifeblood as a business, so keeping it secure can be just as important as keeping your building secure. Many offices aren’t in a position to go paperless quite yet, so robust printing and waste disposal policies are imperative. No sensitive documents should ever be disposed of without first being shredded, for example. It’s worth mentioning again that your server room must remain locked, and you must keep tight control over who in the company has access to it. The best passwords and password policies in the world may not help much at all if someone’s got access to the physical servers themselves.
Moving slightly beyond the physical security, implementing sensible IT policies will help protect against data theft more than any other measures. You should be thinking really carefully about what data your staff have access to. Ensuring staff have access to all the data they need to perform their jobs, and none that they don’t, is often a full-time job by itself. This is when consulting cybersecurity experts really pays dividends. They have the expertise and experience to help you implement and maintain well-proven policies and techniques.
Hopefully, if you’ve made it this far into the article, you’ve got a few ideas on how to improve the security of your own business. If not, it might be worth giving us a call; have a quick chat with us about your office and we’ll probably have some more tips for you. We’re proud to call ourselves security experts, but don’t let that put you off.
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