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10 Effective ways to protect Business Data

Business Data

Remember: Safety first!

We rely heavily on technology to store and manage data in the digital era. This information can go from financial records, customer information, and other confidential documents, which need high protection; otherwise, the consequences could be catastrophic.

The digital world is a place that can be as dangerous as the real one: we have personal data leaks, cyber-attacks, and identity theft and can go to the scariest places within the dark web.

As a business owner, we understand that you focus heavily on taking your business to a higher step, but beyond professional success, your business security is always a priority.

Once you are safe, you take a massive weight off your shoulders, giving you the agility to keep working on your goals while feeling that no harmful software or digital theft is behind your precious data.

In this blog post, we will explain why data security is crucial for your business and how to protect yourself from any danger around the World Wide Web.

Data Security: What is it and Why is it Important?

When discussing data security, we refer to all the measures taken to safeguard data from theft, unauthorized access, or any other crime against your business. This data can go from physical data like files stored on computers or hard drives to physical information like documents. This security aspect covers everything from:

  • Hardware 
  • Software 
  • Storage devices
  •  User devices 
  • Access and administrative controls
  •  Organizations' policies and procedures.

But why is it so important?

First of all, cyberattacks are on the rise!

According to Check Point Research, global cyberattacks increased by 38% in 2022 compared to 2021. With the quick evolution of AI and the arrival of software like CHATGPT, experts warn that cyberattacks could accelerate.

A cyberattack can put your finances or customer's information in great danger, but more alarmingly, it can damage your company's reputation. Data breaches, for example, can lead to legal liabilities, regulatory fines, and loss of customer trust and loyalty.

But before going into how to protect your business, let's explain the most common digital threats.

Types of Cybercrimes.

Perhaps at first thought, digital crimes such as hacking, identity theft or phishing jump to your mind. Even so, before explaining each one, it is good to highlight that all of them are grouped into three categories which are:

  • Property: These are the most common criminal acts that have to do with the theft of money or banking information. Criminals take people's banking information to access their accounts, make purchases or even phishing scams to get people to give away their information. Hackers use malicious software to gain access to a web page with confidential information.
  • Individual: This has to do with ruining a person's image with cyberstalking or hacking of their social networks. Criminals can even distribute personal photos, pornography or any other compromising information of the user.
  • Government: These are the least common crimes, and even so, they are the most serious. As you can imagine, cybercrimes against governments hacking government websites, military websites or distributing propaganda. Cyberterrorists are the ones who usually perpetrate these actions.

Now, going back to the types of cybercrimes we have.

Malware and Ransomware

Ransomware is a crime similar to a kidnapping, but in this case, with your company. The criminals are not interested in your data or in stealing your accounts. Instead, they ask for payment in exchange for having access to your platform again.

Rainbow Tables

Sometimes, hackers don't want to attack just one specific business but rather a group. With rainbow tables, they can access networks of password algorithms and steal all the information from all these companies.

DDoS Attacks

A Distributed Denial of Service Attack is a menace that can make an online service unavailable or take your website down. Hackers achieve this by infecting networks with Botnets, which deposit malware in your computer. 


Botnets are a serious threat to internet security and privacy. They are networks of infected computers and devices controlled remotely by hackers. These botnets can be used for various malicious activities, such as sending spam emails and launching DDoS attacks. Cybercriminals may also rent out these botnets to other criminals for their purposes.

Identity theft

This theft happens when a criminal gains access to your personal information to steal money, access your personal information, or even hack your social media platforms. When talking about social media, these thefts can send phishing campaigns to your contacts to steal their information.


This type of crime falls more into the "individual" category and is more about blackmail or destroying a person's public image. Through messages on social networks or email - usually from anonymous accounts - criminals blackmail victims with sensitive information about them or even with images of sexual content.

Social Engineering

In this type of scam, the criminals are the ones who contact you directly, either posing as an institution such as your bank or even a friend. This will gain your trust to start asking you for personal information such as password, company you work for or banking information. Then, they can sell your information or secure accounts in your name.


Potentially Unwanted Programs are a type of malware that can uninstall primordial software in your system like search engines or pre downloaded adds. The malware can come with spyware or adware.


These are emails or messages that are not marked as spam, and when you open them you give criminals access to all your information. These messages can come in the form of personal information updates, too-good-to-be-true offers, or any other trick that gets you to click on the message.

Prohibited/Illegal Content

Prohibited content includes images or videos of a sensitive or illegal nature that are sold or used as blackmail. This type of sensitive content is not only about the sexual, but can escalate to twisted corners such as child exploitation, terrorism or videos of explicit violence.

Exploit kits

These kits are essentially pre-made tools that cybercriminals can use to gain control of a user's computer. They're easily accessible online and can be used against anyone with a computer. What's concerning is that these kits are regularly updated just like normal software, making them even more dangerous for unsuspecting users.Cibersecurity

How do you protect business data from hackers?

Once we have an idea of the types of dangers we can face within the digital world, it is time to get to work. Cybersecurity is essential for all online businesses, and with specific prevention measures, you can avoid any problems with online criminals.

2 Factor authentication.

As we see, cybersecurity is not something that only FBI and CIA agents are capable of achieving, as typical applications like Gmail or Dropbox come with this double identification option to verify the identity of our users.

The process can be somewhat tedious if you or other users do not carry their cell phones or the password of another email to receive the information codes. Still, you cannot let "laziness" be the perfect excuse to open the door to cybercriminals. Make sure to apply it within company emails and other access to clouds or others.

Encrypt all information

Hackers could breach your security fences. Still, it doesn't mean they won the battle. 

How do you avoid their victory? Simple, you must encrypt every piece of information within your company; when you encrypt every piece of information, you make your company invulnerable to a security breach because no matter if thefts get access to it, once they get all the lines of code, they will just get an encrypted database, which is practically like "Chinese characters" for anyone outside the company.

Inspect for vulnerabilities.

The laws of power tend to focus on knowing the weaknesses of our rivals to outmatch them in battle, but while knowing them can give you some advantage, it is also good to know your own, as you can fix them before they discover them.

In this case, we are not talking about personal weaknesses but more about your software weaknesses. Like humans, no software is perfect, and there could be something you can improve from them. For this, you have to perform a vulnerability scam that lets you check your software stack and look into the gaps you may have. 

After completing this scam, you should get a comprehensive view of all your issues and how to solve them.

Protect against malware.

Malware is malicious software that damages your data. You can run into big trouble if you don't protect your technology devices against it. To protect it:

  • Apply firewall: While this could be the weakest link against hackers, you should still provide your router with a firewall that keeps data thefts far.
  • PC Protection: This involves looking for good software security that can protect you from crimes like identity theft and keep you away from suspect websites and hacking.
  • Keep emails clean: Emails that don't go right into the spam threaten your company. You can install antispam software that protects your business against unwanted emails.

Secure your wireless network.

Your wireless is the first base that hackers will want to attack. Therefore, you must put up a wall to protect it from them. When we talk about a "wall" in digital terms, we mean encrypting it, but be careful; a simple encryption would make your wall look like a wooden one: somewhat annoying to break through, but it is still achievable.

In this case, we recommend looking for an encryption that has a higher level. As an extra tip, turn off the broadcasting function to make your network invisible.

Create longer passwords.

If we talk about cybersecurity, we must address passwords, as these are essential to protecting your company.

Now, passwords should be memorable enough but simultaneously encrypted sufficiently that only you can denote it.

Some tips to create strong passwords:

  • Avoid at all costs putting personal information in your password. Do not enter your date of birth, your name, or your children's. Going a little further, don't just include the names of well-known people or a special person's birthday.
  • Make your passwords longer to 8 characters.
  • Replace letters with numbers or signs: A = 4, E = 3, i = !.
  • If you know a language with unusual characters - Arabic, Russian, Chinese, or Japanese - you can add letters from its alphabet to mislead any hacker.

Continuing with the topic of passwords, we have where you store them.

Writing them on a "motherboard" or in the blog notes could be safe if you are sure that no one, really no one, will be able to access it. In this case, said paper would have to be kept under lock and key, and your notepad would be better if you had a complicated pattern that no one could access your cell phone.

In any case, we also understand that today, most passwords are already saved in the database of the apps or applications we access. Still, if you want an extra layer, you can use Google Password Manager or LastPass.

Beware of personal devices.

Nowadays, it is more than typical for all workers to bring their laptops to the office. Although this saves you from having to buy or maintain all the computers, the downside is that a single infected device can cause an entire pandemic within your company. For this, the solution is to restrict Internet access so that your IT team can scan any device and let it in once it is secured.

Remote device wiping

Now, the problem with personal devices can go a little bit further, but in this case, it doesn't have to do with them.

Employees' devices could be stolen or even borrowed, and if they have the auto-login option, your business information might be in trouble. In this case, the best solution is to wipe devices remotely. For this, you have to set the app up ahead of time and equip every device with permissions.

Limit file sharing

As you get more file sharing, you can make your network more exposed to hackers. If an intruder gets to one of them, doors are wide open for them.

Now, the solution will never be to not share any files, as every digital business needs this to keep working. Instead, the best solution is to isolate permissions or disable the share option when it's not in use.

Be careful with phishing schemes.

With Phishing emails, hackers can target your credit and identity, hack your computer and network or even steal all your passwords. These emails can be disguised in the form of a bank update and come with links or attachments to download. To avoid falling into this trap, make sure to verify:

  • The email comes from a trustworthy company or person
  • Is a person who has sent emails before
  • It is a message you were expecting
  • Does not look unprofessional or "mysterious."

Final thoughts

You can always count on the help of a cybersecurity company to take care of your company's data. Even so, it is good to emphasize that your company's safety is your responsibility and that of all your workers.

With these tips we have given you, you can be sure that you will scare away many online virtual thieves.

Also, if you need more help with your digital marketing or managing your online business, contact us to help!

FAQS - Frequently Asked Questions

What are the initial steps to take in protecting my business data?

Initiating protection for your business data involves a comprehensive approach, blending technology, policy, and education. Start with a thorough assessment of your data to understand what you have and its sensitivity level. This step is crucial for tailoring your security measures effectively. Following the assessment, implement a robust data classification strategy to ensure sensitive information is handled with the highest security protocols. Establishing strong access controls is also paramount; only employees who need to access specific data for their job role should have the permission to do so. Additionally, developing a clear, well-communicated data security policy and providing ongoing employee training are essential. These initial steps create a solid foundation for a resilient data protection strategy, mirroring practices at Codedesign where client data integrity and security are top priorities.

How does encryption help secure business data?

Encryption is a powerful tool in securing business data, acting as a digital lock and key system. It converts data into a coded format that can only be accessed or deciphered by individuals with the correct decryption key. This means that even if the data is intercepted during transmission or stolen, it remains unreadable and useless to unauthorized users. Encryption protects data both at rest, such as stored on servers or in databases, and in transit, like during email communication or data transfers. This layer of security is essential for protecting sensitive information from cyber threats and ensuring compliance with data protection regulations, reinforcing the secure environment needed for advanced digital marketing strategies and the safeguarding of client data at companies like Codedesign.

What is two-factor authentication, and why is it important?

Two-factor authentication (2FA) is an additional security layer that requires not only a password and username but also something that only the user has on them, i.e., a piece of information only they should know or have immediately to hand - such as a physical token, a fingerprint, or a unique code sent to their mobile device. 2FA is crucial because it significantly decreases the likelihood of unauthorized access to accounts, even if a password is compromised. In the context of digital marketing and data protection, 2FA ensures that access to sensitive marketing platforms, client accounts, and data repositories is securely controlled, thereby enhancing overall security posture and protecting against data breaches.

How often should I conduct vulnerability scans?

Conducting vulnerability scans is a critical component of a proactive cybersecurity strategy. It is recommended to perform these scans quarterly at a minimum. However, for environments that are more dynamic or face higher security risks, monthly or even continuous scans might be necessary. The frequency should also increase after any significant changes to your network, such as the deployment of new hardware or software, or following updates and patches. Regular vulnerability scanning allows businesses to detect and remediate potential weaknesses before they can be exploited by cyber attackers, thus maintaining the integrity of their data and supporting secure operations.

What are the best practices for creating strong passwords?

Creating strong passwords is fundamental in securing access to sensitive information and systems. Best practices include using a minimum of 12 characters that incorporate a mix of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special symbols. Avoid using easily guessable information, such as personal details or common words. Instead, opt for passphrases or combinations of words that are easy for the user to remember but hard for others to guess. Implementing a password management tool can also help in generating and storing complex passwords securely. Regularly updating passwords and using unique passwords for different accounts further enhances security measures.

Can anti-malware software fully protect my business from cyber threats?

While anti-malware software plays a critical role in defending against viruses, spyware, and other malicious software, it cannot fully protect a business from all cyber threats on its own. The cyber threat landscape is constantly evolving, with attackers devising new methods to bypass security measures. Therefore, a multi-layered security approach is essential. This includes using firewalls, intrusion detection systems, regular software updates, encryption, and employee training on security best practices. Comprehensive security strategies that integrate these elements can significantly reduce the risk of cyber threats, ensuring a more robust defense for business data and systems.

What is the significance of regular data backups?

Regular data backups are a crucial safety net for any business, providing a means to restore data in the event of loss, theft, corruption, or a cyberattack. They ensure business continuity by minimizing downtime and data loss, which can be catastrophic in terms of financial and reputational damage. Effective backup strategies involve keeping multiple copies of data in different locations, including off-site and on cloud platforms, to protect against physical and cyber threats. Regular testing of backup restores is also important to ensure data can be successfully recovered when needed. Implementing regular, automated backups as part of a comprehensive data protection strategy can safeguard critical business operations and client information, a practice upheld in high-security mindful environments such as digital marketing agencies.

How do I train my employees on data security best practices?

Training employees on data security best practices involves developing an ongoing education program that includes regular training sessions, updates on the latest cyber threats, and best practices for prevention. Start by creating awareness about the importance of data security and the role each employee plays in safeguarding the organization's data. Use real-world examples to illustrate potential security threats and the consequences of data breaches. Incorporate interactive elements such as quizzes, workshops, and simulations to engage employees and reinforce learning. Regularly review and update the training content to reflect the latest cybersecurity trends and threats. Ensuring employees are informed and vigilant about data security is a critical line of defense in protecting business data.

What measures should be taken to secure mobile devices in the business?

Securing mobile devices in a business context involves implementing policies and technologies to protect sensitive information. Start with a mobile device management (MDM) solution to enforce security policies, manage device configurations, and remotely wipe data on lost or stolen devices. Require strong passwords or biometric authentication to access devices, and ensure that devices are encrypted. Install security software and regularly update operating systems and apps to protect against vulnerabilities. Additionally, establish a clear policy on the use of personal devices for work purposes (BYOD) that includes security requirements. Training employees on secure mobile practices, such as avoiding public Wi-Fi for business transactions and recognizing phishing attempts, is also essential.

How can small businesses afford effective data protection strategies?

Small businesses can afford effective data protection strategies by prioritizing and scaling their cybersecurity measures according to their specific needs and resources. Begin by identifying the most critical data and systems that need protection. Implementing basic security measures such as strong passwords, two-factor authentication, and regular software updates can significantly enhance security at a low cost. Open-source and cost-effective security tools offer additional protection without a significant investment. Additionally, leveraging cloud services can provide robust security features built into their platforms. Small businesses should also consider investing in cybersecurity insurance to mitigate financial risks associated with data breaches. Finally, promoting a culture of security awareness among employees can prevent many security incidents without incurring high costs.

About Bruno Gavino

Bruno Gavino is the CEO and partner of Codedesign, a digital marketing agency with a strong international presence. Based in Lisbon, Portugal, with offices in Boston, Singapore, and Manchester (UK) Codedesign has been recognized as one of the top interactive agencies and eCommerce agencies. Awarded Top B2B Company in Europe and Top B2C company in retail, Codedesign aims to foster personal relationships with clients and create a positive work environment for its team.  

He emphasizes the need for digital agencies to focus on data optimization and performance to meet the increasingly results-driven demands of clients. His experience in digital marketing, combined with a unique background that includes engineering and data, contributes to his effective and multifaceted leadership style.

Follow Bruno Gavino on Linkedin

About Codedesign

Codedesign is a digital marketing agency with a strong multicultural and international presence, offering expert services in digital marketing. Our digital agency in Lisbon, Boston, and Manchester enables us to provide market-ready strategies that suit a wide range of clients across the globe (both B2B and B2C). We specialize in creating impactful online experiences, focusing on making your digital presence strong and efficient. Our approach is straightforward and effective, ensuring that every client receives a personalized service that truly meets their needs.

Our digital agency is committed to using the latest data and technology to help your business stand out. Whether you're looking to increase your online visibility, connect better with your audience, get more leads, or grow your online sales. For more information, read our Digital Strategy Blog or to start your journey with us, please feel free to contact us.

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