Protecting IT infrastructures is just as essential for small businesses as it is for larger companies. The problem is that not every small business has the money and resources to be able to implement new technology within their workplace. A new wave of enterprise level security packages have provided an affordable solution for small businesses, enabling them to obtain the protection they need for their computer networks. Many of these solutions are cloud based and offer small businesses the same level of protection as those used by large corporations.

In this article we will explain the importance of enterprise level security and the benefits it can provide for your small business. We will also discuss our favourite enterprise level security packages, explaining their advantages and drawbacks.

Keep your computer system healthy with enterprise level security software

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Purpose of enterprise level security packages

There are certain websites that are simply inappropriate for viewing at the workplace. These websites include those that contain distasteful content and those that cause distractions, like social media sites. Content filtering plays an important role in enterprise level security packages. It enables small business owners to block inappropriate websites and prevent unsafe content from entering their IT infrastructure. Having an element of control over the websites your staff can visit at work, will give you the peace of mind knowing that your system is not at risk from harm and that your staff are using their time productively.

Many content filtering programmes are now fairly advanced meaning that they can automatically detect and block inappropriate content. This means that you do not have to spend time typing in all of the websites you would like to block. Whilst content filtering is a great solution, it works most effectively when implemented with a strict policy on internet usage within the work place.

Prevent attacks on your system with firewalls

We all know just how harmful computer viruses and malware can be, especially for businesses relying heavily on their IT systems. This is why it is important to have firewalls set up. Firewalls provide an extra layer of protection, preventing viruses and malware from being able to attack computer systems. They also block unauthorised access to your system, ensuring that important and confidential business data is safe and secure at all times.

Many enterprise level security packages have firewalls that can be configured so that they automatically know what to do in the event of a malware attack or breach of security. Small business owners can set their firewalls up so that they can automatically detect and block viruses, or destroy those that may be accidently downloaded by members of staff. When installing enterprise level security software, it is always a good idea to check the default settings. You may find that you need to configure the firewall or scanners to that they provide are consistent in their efforts to protect your network.

Keep your data safe and secure

Data backup and recovery programmes are a key part of enterprise level security. They aim to prevent permanent loss of data by regularly backing up the files saved on your system. Unfortunately you never know when disaster is going to strike so it is best to be prepared. Forty three per cent of businesses that experience a loss of data through disaster never re-open. By using data backup and recovery software you are at much lesser risk of becoming part of this statistic.

The software will ensure that your files are regularly backed up and are stored in a safe and encrypted environment. Today most security packages enable you to access files remotely, so that you still have all of the information you need to run your business, even if something unfortunate has happened to your working environment.

Many work places ban the use of social media websites as they can cause staff to become distracted and unproductive.

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Finding the right security solution

The recommended enterprise level security software for your business will depend on a number of factors including the number of computers you use and your budget. Whilst most packages come with discs that enable you to install firewalls and virus scanners on your computers, some more advanced packages will also come with cloud facilities that enable you to upload files to a virtual storage place. It is recommended that you have a good level of security in place to keep your small business protected from virtual attacks.

Enterprise level security software recommendations

The loss or breach of data can mean the end of the line for small businesses. If your business keeps a record of client data such as billing addresses, personal details or financial information, it is your responsibility to keep it safe, secure and out of reach from unauthorised access. In order to do this you will need to find an enterprise level security package that meets the needs and requirements of your business. We have listed a few of our favourites below.

Kaspersky Small Office Security

If you are looking for a consolidated security package that users a network server to share data and facilities, then Kaspersky is a sensible choice. It is purpose built for small businesses with fewer than ten employees and is highly affordable. Kaspersky can be managed from a single PC. It is quick and easy to install and provides straight forward configuration options. Unlike other enterprise security solutions it requires an admin password for security settings. This password is required for changing access and policy settings, helping to keep your network safe.

If you are looking for a basic, yet effective security solution, then Kaspersky Small Office Security is definitely worth considering.

McAfee Small Business SaaS Security Solutions

McAfee offer a cloud based security-as-a-service solution that has been purpose built for small businesses. It is managed by McAfee’s team of security experts and aims to deliver the same high standard of security used by large corporate business. It is designed to protect all devices, email communication and web-traffic, whilst also being affordable, efficient, easy to manage and quick to deploy.

McAfee’s enterprise security package excels when it comes to managing the security of multiple devices across multiple locations. It is the ideal solution for small businesses that have employees working remotely. There have been reports of the anti-virus and anti-malware side of the solution being inconsistent, so it would be sensible to implement strict user policies to help govern the websites employees visit.

AVG Internet Security Business Edition 2013

AVG provide a comprehensive network protection package for small businesses. It boasts plenty of security features, whilst still being affordable. If you are looking for a package that is easy to manage, then this software will certainly tick the box. It is designed to make management easy, allowing business owners to spend more time on other areas of their business. One of its best features is its modern, straight forward interface. It has been upgraded on previous models and now has a simplified menu layout which is compatible with touch screen devices.

If we could offer any advice when it comes to installing this enterprise security solution, it would be to check the default settings. You will find that the software is programmed to only check incoming emails and not outgoing emails, so this is one of the changes you will need to make. You will also want to check that the scanners are set to track cookies and that scheduled scans have been enabled. These things can be easily missed if you do not think to look.

How to set up

Most enterprise security packages come with a disc and instructions that are very easy to follow. Simply pop the disc into your computer and follow the on-screen installation guide. When it comes to setting up your firewall, you will be given various options to choose from. It is best to air on the side of caution by being very strict about what you do and do not want it to block.

Enterprise security packages also enable business owners to block certain websites. Most work places prefer their employees not to access websites with distasteful content and some even block social media websites, to prevent them from causing distraction.

If you require additional security measures such as cloud services and regular data back-ups, you may want to get in touch with a local IT company. When researching IT companies it is best to choose one that is able to provide you with bespoke IT services that are tailored to meet the needs and requirements of your business and employees.

Next steps

If your small business does not already have enterprise level security, then this is something that you need to look into investing in as soon as possible. It is not worth putting your business at risk from virtual attacks and data loss! The internet is a fantastic tool for researching various enterprise level security packages, but if you require more information or help setting up your security system, it is recommended that you get in touch with a reputable IT company.

You can choose to either have an IT company install your software for a one off fee, or you may want to consider outsourcing your IT work to them. This will give you the peace of mind that your system is being managed professionally on a daily basis. Outsourcing IT system management will usually cost a monthly fee, however it will save you money in the long run as it will prevent you from needing to hire in-house experts to manage your IT system.

Conclusion

Enterprise level security is a must-have for all small businesses, no matter what industry they are part of. The fact it has been specially designed for small businesses and priced affordably, means that there is no real excuse not to invest in it. It will keep all of your important business details and confidential information safe in times of disaster and prevent harmful attacks on your network system. As a business owner, having this extra security will give you the peace of mind knowing that you are doing everything you can to protect your business.

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Author bio: Security is a key part of what we do here at Cheeky Munkey, being IT support specialists in London, security is a top priority for our established team.