The internet is a powerful tool for non-profit organizations and a backbone for virtually all day-to-day operations. You need to make IT security a priority for your organization to keep your IT infrastructure secure from malware and hackers to avoid loss of data and the disruption of business operations.
As a nonprofit, sensitive data such as customer records and donor information are a target for hackers. To address the menace of cyber-attacks and other forms of security breaches, you must adopt IT best practices to keep your nonprofit secure.
Whether your nonprofit organization is small or large, here are three important IT security measures to shield you from breaches:
Educate your staff and volunteers on IT security
You must extend the knowledge and awareness of network security and IT best practices to your staff and volunteers. Having a dedicated IT team helps you respond to security breaches and a proactive approach involves all members of your organization.
Some common forms of IT security breaches involve phishing attacks and malicious links sent via emails that your employees might not understand. Educating them on the basics of IT security will make them less vulnerable to such attacks and arm them with knowledge on how best to use anti-virus programs and other software to protect themselves and make your IT network less vulnerable to security breaches. In addition, you can set up a routine to update your employees on new security measures and tools to counter security infringement.
Deploy Dependable IT Technologies
Running your operations on old hardware and software is one of the most common vulnerabilities in securing your non-profit organization. If you are using an outdated operating system such as Windows XP or Vista, you ought to upgrade to a new version of Windows and ensure that you constantly keep your systems updated and patched. Out-dated software is vulnerable to hacking attempts because they lack the software patches that reinforce the security features. According to TechSoup, upgrading your software applications is a significant way to overcome spam emails and phishing attacks that often lead to security breaches.
The same rule applies to your IT hardware. If you are using old computer hardware, your IT network is more susceptible to weaknesses that hackers can exploit. Investing in the latest hardware and software technologies will give you a strong layer of security to keep your non-profit secure.
(Also see: “Your Older Firewall Makes You Vulnerable to Ransomware.”)
Strengthen your Website’s Security
Whether your non-profit organization’s website runs in a public or private cloud or on premises, website security is a critical element in securing your data. SSL certification is a must-have to protect your website from malicious visitors. According to Blackbaud, most donors prefer to give via online payment. Therefore, you need to have a secure payment processor and tight web-security to prevent hackers from targeting donations. Integrating a service like PayPal to process donations on your website-and an SSL security layer will protect you from hackers.
Adopting these steps will boost your efforts in enforcing network security of your non-profit, and give you the peace of mind for your organization. If you are located in the greater Essex County, NJ area, northern or central NJ or New York City and need IT security consulting or other Managed IT Services, contact us today for a free consultation.