When it comes to cybersecurity, most business owners believe that they have taken all the necessary measures to secure their network. However, the harsh reality is that no network is ever 100% safe from cyberthreats and attacks. Whether it’s a small startup or a large corporation, every business is vulnerable to cybersecurity risks.
As technology continues to advance and cybercriminals become more sophisticated, it is imperative for businesses to constantly evaluate their network security and be aware of any warning signs that may indicate potential vulnerabilities. Here are seven red flags that your business network may not be as secure as you think.
1. Disabled or uninstalled security programs
The first and most obvious warning sign of a compromised network is any disabled or uninstalled security programs. This includes antivirus, firewalls, and other security software that are essential in protecting your network from malicious attacks. If you notice that these programs have been turned off or removed without your knowledge, it could be a sign that someone has gained unauthorized access to your network.
2. A spike in error messages
A sudden increase in system or application error messages can also indicate that your network has been breached. These error messages may be caused by malware or other malicious programs attempting to access and disrupt your system. It is important to address these error messages promptly and investigate the root cause to prevent further damage.
3. Spam accusations or emails sent without your knowledge
If you have been contacted by your email provider or clients claiming that spam emails are being sent from your account, it could mean that your network has been compromised. Hackers often use compromised networks to send unsolicited emails and spread malware to unsuspecting users. This not only poses a risk to your network’s security but also damages your company’s reputation.
4. Fake antivirus pop-ups
Beware of fake antivirus pop-ups that claim to have detected a virus on your system and prompt you to download or pay for their services. These pop-ups are often used as a tactic by cybercriminals to trick users into providing sensitive information or downloading malware onto their devices. If you encounter these pop-ups, run a scan with your trusted security software and avoid clicking on any suspicious links or messages. Only trust legitimate security programs recommended by reputable sources.
5. Unwanted browser toolbars or extensions
The presence of unwanted browser toolbars or extensions is another warning sign of a possible network breach. These toolbars and extensions can be installed without the user’s knowledge and can track online activity, collect sensitive information, and even introduce malware onto the system. Be sure to regularly review and remove any suspicious toolbars or extensions from your browser.
6. One or more of your passwords suddenly changing
If you find that your passwords have been changed without your knowledge, it is a clear indication that someone has accessed your network and possibly gained access to your sensitive information. This could be due to a phishing scam, weak passwords, or outdated security protocols. It is crucial to change all compromised passwords immediately and implement stronger password management practices.
7. Frequent system crashes
While system crashes can occur for a variety of reasons, it’s essential to pay attention to any unusual and frequent crashes. This could be a result of malware or other cyberthreats that are disrupting your system and causing it to malfunction. If your computers or devices are crashing more often than usual, it’s worth investigating further to ensure the security of your network.
Related reading: The power of IT security audits in safeguarding your business
It is important to note that these warning signs do not necessarily mean your network has been breached, but they should serve as a reminder to regularly review and update your security protocols. It’s also imperative to educate employees on best practices for maintaining a secure network and implementing strong cybersecurity measures.
By staying vigilant and proactive, you can protect your business from potential cyberthreats and ensure the safety of your network and sensitive information.
Don’t wait for a breach to happen before taking action — let Complete Document Solutions help secure your network today. Contact us for a consultation.