How to Protect Your Farm from Cybercriminals
Protect your farm from agro-terrorism, data breaches, hacks, and other deadly cyber-threats with these effective, tried and proven cybersecurity strategies.
Hackers attack a business every 39 seconds, but there are ways to avoid becoming one of their many victims. Following are five tried and proven ways to protect your farm from cybersecurity threats.
1. Use a Firewall
A firewall is your first line of defense against hackers. It protects your network by:
- Monitoring your network and only accepting incoming data based on pre-defined criteria
- Masking your network address
- Capturing messages that enter or leave your network
- Comparing critical data parts to determine if information should be authorized
2. Provide Cybersecurity Training to Employees
Every single farm employee with access to the farm network needs basic cybersecurity training. This not only includes those who work at a computer but even those who use a cell phone or personal computer that hooks up to the farm’s wi-fi. Your farm’s employees need to know how to recognize phishing emails, fake websites, malicious email attachments, and more. They should also know what to do if a data breach occurs.
3. Limit Access to Information
Many farmers may be surprised to learn that international terrorists are very interested in their farm’s invaluable information. Agro-terrorism is a very real threat that could not only jeopardize a single farmer’s living but also the entire nation’s food supply. Bear this point in mind next time you share your username and network password with an employee or allow an employee access to your farm’s proprietary information. Every single employee should have his or her own username and password and farmers should only share information on a need-to-know basis.
4. Choose Strong Passwords and Use Two-Factor Authentication
The importance of choosing a strong password cannot be overstated. Your password should contain capital and lower-case letters, symbols, and numbers. It should not be based on personal information and should never be written down; furthermore, you’ll want to change it every few months for added security. It’s also wise to use two-factor authentication to prevent hackers from breaching your system even if they manage to figure your password out.
5. Update Software Regularly
One of the biggest cybersecurity dangers is failing to update software on a regular basis. Updates are provided to fix vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit; outdated applications leave the door open for unauthorized third parties to access your data.
DeVeera is an IT managed service provider that specializes in working with farms and agricultural companies. The company offers managed IT services, cybersecurity services, data back-up assistance and more to keep your network secure and in good working order at all times. Get in touch to find out more or to make an appointment with one of our IT experts.