How to get started with IT security

Monday 29 July 2013

Every business leader, regardless of their personal background, should have at least some understanding of IT and internet security. So much has been said about the nature of online threats in the press, in trade journals and through other forms of media that most people should be aware of the common threats. If you are using a PC, laptop or other device to connect to the internet, you need to have the required protection in place to guard against online attacks.

These can come in different forms - viruses, worms, Trojans, spyware, malware, hacker attacks and the rest. No business - or individual consumer - can ever say with confidence that they are safe from attack. And as such, it pays to ensure basic safeguards are implemented to ensure you don't become a victim. Online attacks can lead to technology breakdown, loss of data, fraud and potentially reputational damage - all of which is best avoided if you are trying to run a viable business.

How to protect your PC

Various anti-virus and firewall solutions are available to help guard your computers against IT security threats. These tend to be available on a subscription basis, with real-time updates delivered online via the cloud to ensure users have the latest security protections in place. All computer users are urged to defend their systems, and have various options to do so. Some may involve quite a significant financial investment, but others less so.

For start-ups and small and medium-sized businesses seeking PC protection, Microsoft Security Essentials may prove to be a good starting place. The solution - which is compatible with Windows 7 and earlier versions of the operating system - is designed to prevent harmful software from accessing or damaging valuable information. It is available for small businesses with up to ten PCs - companies with a bigger fleet can use Microsoft System Centre 2012 Endpoint Protection.

For Windows 8 users, it is even easier to provide basic IT security protection. Businesses and consumers using Microsoft's latest operating system can take advantage of in-built protection courtesy of Windows Defender. This is included and ready to go when you purchase your device.

Downloading your IT security solution

If your company does wish to take advantage of Microsoft Security Essentials, the solution is easy to download and access. Since it is available for free, there is no registration process requiring billing or personal information collection. Security Essentials installs after a quick download and Genuine Windows validation. It then automatically updates with the latest signature updates and protection technology. The solution runs quietly in the background while you perform other tasks, with scans typically scheduled when the system is idle.

Find out more about Microsoft IT security solutions by clicking here.

Posted by Alex Boardman