13 Tips on How to Create a Secure Network for Small Business
You can set up a secure network for small business without overspending your budget, as long as you play it smart. When you stay cautious with your data, it should stay safe from the hands of malicious hackers. Here are some tips to get you started on how to build a secure network for small business:
Creating Secure Wifi Passwords
Make sure you’re using a secure WiFi password. A secure WiFi password will use a mix of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. It will also be at least eight characters long. Stay away from insecure WEP encryption, opting instead for much more secure WPA or WPA2 encrypted passwords.
Creating Secure Admin Passwords
The same rules apply for your router’s administrative password as does your WiFi password. You certainly don’t want just anyone changing the settings on your router if they do happen to crack your WiFi password.
Disabling Remote Login
Make sure that remote login is disabled with a router if it is an option in your router’s settings. Most people don’t need remote browser access to their router’s settings. This all too much provides an easy backdoor entry for criminals to gain remote access and control your network.
Build a Secure Network for Small Business with a Hardware Firewall (Router)
The firewall features on your router should be enabled, so that traffic that isn’t being specifically requested by devices on your network is automatically rejected.
Build a Secure Network for Small Business with DoS Protection
This also should be enabled if it is a feature on your router. This prevents criminals from flooding you with connection requests until your network crashes.
Disabling The Download of Fragmented Packets
It is good policy to reject fragmented packets in general due to the fact that fragmented packets are not going to provide you with the data you need. It’s best not to waste bandwidth downloading them.
Disabling Universal Plug N Play
Universal Plug N Play is just a bad idea from the start, so it is best to disable this on your network. While the concept of being able to just plug in anything and go is wonderful, hackers often exploit this backdoor to your network as a weakness, because it will accept any connection.
Build a Secure Network for Small Business Using MAC Address Filtering
Using a white-list to only allow connections from the devices whose MAC addresses are listed is an easy though slightly painstaking way of making sure your WiFi network is the most secure. A MAC address is an address that identifies your unique device on a network, and can be found through the network settings of any WiFi connected device.
Build a Secure Network for Small Business Using a Software Firewall (PC)
While hardware firewalls are great for blocking unknown incoming connections, software firewalls are great for keeping you aware of unknown outgoing connections. Due to this, they are another additional way to increase the security of your network even if you already use a hardware firewall. With a software firewall installed (especially if it includes a HIPS detection system) you will instantly know if a piece of malware or adware/spyware begins to make system changes and attempts to connect to the internet.
If your router is in a physically insecure area, you may want to disable the WPS functionality. This enhances security so no one can connect to your network just by pushing the button on the top of your router.
Using Encryption to Create a Secure Network for Small Business
Use encryption as much as possible – in your passwords, in your documents and emails, and yes, even with your hard drive and online storage. Encrypted data takes ages to decrypt by brute force methods. It will make it that much harder for a criminal to make use of your data should they gain access to it.
Updates Create a Secure Network for Small Business
Make sure all your devices’ firmware and software is updated regularly. This is so that any security holes and exploits that are discovered are immediately patched up before they can be used by hackers or malware.
Backups Create a Secure Network for Small Business… Just in Case
If worse comes to worst, you will definitely want to have a backup of all your data to fall back on. This is just in case you cannot fix the issue without reinstalling your firmware or operating system(s).