Email has always been the primary method of communication for organizations of all sizes in the last few decades. Its universal nature has made it indispensable for fostering seamless collaboration, information sharing, and customer engagement. However, this growing reliance on email has also exposed businesses, particularly SMBs, to an ever-increasing array of outside cyber threats.
Consider these alarming statistics: 94% of malware is delivered via email, and an astounding 36% of all data breaches involved phishing, according to Verizon’s 2022 report. These figures help emphasize the urgent need for SMBs to strengthen their email security while using good email security habits.
This article provides you 9 actionable tips for enhancing your email security and safeguarding your organization from email-related cyber threats that could potentially jeopardize your valuable data and compromise your business operations.
9 Tips to Increase Your Email Security
- Don’t open attachments from unknown senders – Cybercriminals often use attachments to deliver malware. If you don’t recognize the sender, staying cautious and avoiding opening attachments is best.
- Implement an anti-virus – A reliable anti-virus can help detect and block malicious threats sent through email. Make sure to keep it updated for maximum protection.
- Encrypt sensitive data – When sending confidential information via email, use encryption to ensure only the intended recipient can access the data. This tactic ensures that your information stays secure even if it gets intercepted.
- Take phishing seriously – Be aware – Phishing attacks are designed to trick you into revealing sensitive information or clicking on malicious links and attachments. Always actively double-check the sender’s address and the email content before clicking on anything.
- Train employees regularly – Your employees are your first line of defense against cyber threats. Regular training on email security best practices can help them stay vigilant and prevent costly mistakes.
- Phishing awareness training – Besides general email security training, train your employees to recognize common red flags of phishing emails, such as urgent requests or too-good-to-be-true emails.
- Implement MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication) – MFA adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to provide multiple forms of identification before accessing their email. This additional security makes it harder for attackers to gain unauthorized access, even if they’ve managed to steal a password.
- Avoid using public Wi-Fi when logging in to your email – Often insecure and monitored by cybercriminals, public Wi-Fi networks, such as those found in Starbucks, pose a risk to your data. When accessing your email, stick to private networks or a VPN to ensure your data stays safe.
- Use strong passwords for email accounts – Use a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters to make your password difficult to crack. Remember, password length is also crucial, so aim for a longer one. If you have trouble remembering passwords, use a password manager.
Email security is one of many aspects of keeping your SMB safe from cyber threats. These simple tips can significantly reduce your risk of falling victim to email-based attacks. Remember, it’s always better to be proactive in protecting your data than reactive.
And if you’re looking for a trusted partner to help you implement any of these strategies and strengthen your email security, GB Tech is here. As a solution provider with focus expertise in cybersecurity, we can help ensure your business is well-prepared for the ever-evolving world of email threats. Get in touch today to discuss further how we can help safeguard your SMB.