Jan. 23, 2023

Securing Your Business: Usernames, Passwords & More!

Listen in as I talk about how to protect your business from cyber threats with security solutions.

Let’s be honest, the thought of taking extra time of using complex passwords is not appealing. If you’re like most, you set a password and may think, “I’ll change it later.” The next thing you know, years have passed, and you now use that same password for multiple accounts. This may not be one of the sexiest topics in business, but it is one of the most important. 

"Security should be at the top of the list because everything has gone online, and it may be an extra step, but I am here to tell you your business depends on it."

In this episode, I discuss:
 1. What is the best way to make sure your business information is secure?
 2. What are the benefits of using two-factor authentication?
 3. Why should use a VPN when using Wi-Fi in public places?

Chapter Summaries:

How many of you use the same password across different platforms, different websites? In the grand scheme of business, security should be at the top of your list. Your business depends on it.

In public places, you should have a VPN turned on your laptop and devices that you use. 

Some small businesses that get hacked or their data gets breached, don't survive. To have a more secure password is so worth it. Pay for a subscription for software that is encrypted to store that information. 

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[00:00:00] Kristina Stubblefield: Thank you for tuning in to WedPro Business Solutions. I'm your host, Kristina Stubblefield. Now, some things in business are boring, however, they tend to be some of the most important things and this topic is on security. I preach a lot about using systems and processes and technology, software tools, all of those things, and I don't think there's enough discussion or the light shined on about security.

[00:00:33] What am I talking about? Well, your username/passwords that login information, I always encourage business owners, especially wedding professionals, to use an all in one business system, which is kind of like a CRM and communication platform. And most of the time, a lot of your client information and your business information is stored in that platform.

[00:01:04] So security, and I know I'm raising my hand up right now. I am guilty of this. How many of you out there use the same password across different platforms, different websites? Because why? It's. It's easy. After all, we're trying to be as efficient as possible and who has time to keep track of passwords. So with that being said, I've really been making a focus of updating password information, making sure that the security is in place from the standpoint, most places now, you can have two factor authentication.

[00:01:46] If I haven't lost you yet on this episode, that might just do it because it's a hassle sometimes, right? You've gotta get a code texted to you or a code sent to your email. But in the grand scheme of business security should be at the top of the list because everything has went online and it may be an extra step.

[00:02:09] But I am here to tell you, your business depends. So what can you do? That's what we wanna get at the solution. Kristina, what's the solution? Well, I'm gonna share with you number one, what I use, and I use a couple different programs. There are several different ones out there. I can only speak from experience.

[00:02:30] I do have an IT background. There are several different good softwares out there. Me personally, I use McAfee on my computer. A total protection package. I can't tell you the price right off the top of my head, but I believe a five user package at the time of the recording is under $300 for the year.

[00:02:53] Now, you may be saying to yourself, wow, $300, or you could be saying, wow. It's only $300 and I have some kind of protection and that might not be the only type of protection you need. But what I really like about the product is, yes, it keeps my computer safe. But one of the things for me, I'm on the go a lot, I do speaking engagements and, teaching engagements, and I'm in public places with wifi and I really like that it has a VPN included. Now, what does that mean? Well, I'm not gonna get real technical on you. What you're doing is you are keeping your computer information protected when you're on a public wifi, and if you're at home, do you need to use that? I'll leave that to your own decision, but in public places, You definitely should have a VPN turned on your laptop and devices that you use.

[00:03:55] Now, I'm not trying to send you swirling out of control. Oh my gosh, my stuff's not safe. Listen, the world we live in today is a very different, and there are people that are out there just trying to wreak havoc on businesses and other individuals. As a matter of fact, there are companies that are hired to create computer viruses and hacking and malware, and the list goes on and on.

[00:04:28] And so that's why I wanted to take just a little bit of time to explain to you the importance of security. And first and foremost, it starts on your. Next, let's talk about all of those different logins that you have. And you can look at this from a standpoint of personal end business. A lot of people pay bills online, have logins to different websites, things like that, making your password secure.

[00:04:56] I can't tell you the number of people that I've come across. And, this information was shared with me last year and I looked it up again. The number one. Ready for it. It's password 123. And if that's not good enough, the second one is password12345. So what can you do to not make it as complex or complicated to remember?

[00:05:25] It should be complex when you enter it. And I know, go ahead. I, huff and puff a little bit to myself. Okay, you want me to use numbers and characters? The best suggestion that I can give that was shared with me by an IT professional is a sentence that is one of the best things you can do. I'm going to give you a, an example.

[00:05:47] I don't encourage you to use it because I'm saying it here, but, if you have a favorite, I love hiking. 23 exclamation point. I'm just giving you an example. You could capitalize some of the different letters I encourage you to do so you could also switch out some of the letters for numbers. So instead of I, you can use one or instead of E three.

[00:06:14] And listen, I'm in the same boat with you. I think I've said that three times already in this episode. It takes time. It's a few extra seconds, but it can make the biggest difference in your business. Please do not have the same password on all of your different logins. That is a no-no. A very big no-no.

[00:06:38] I know people that or I have come across people, let me rephrase that. I have come across people that use their address, their date of birth, their first and last name, their children's. Listen, the systems that are out there to crack passwords and things like that, it's high tech and the more complex you make your password and by making it longer, more characters.

[00:07:07] That helps in that complexity. Okay, so there's also another tool. There are several different ones, but I'll share with you about LastPass. That is a secure system for storing passwords. Again, I've used many over the years. It is completely your preference and the one that offers the features that you like The.

[00:07:30] And what that can do is it can store all your passwords for you and prompt them into the website when you get there without you having to remember. Now, you may be thinking, I store that in Google. Okay, guess what I have as well? So how secure is your Google? Now for most, you may answer. Well, I'm in that all the time, every day, multiple times a day.

[00:08:00] So it's the easiest password. Change it. If you take anything from this episode, so many people use their Google account. I do. I get it. Google Docs, Google Sheets, the calendar mail, all of that. Take the few minutes to make a complex password for your accounts, and I say accounts within s because most of us have multiple accounts.

[00:08:27] because if you're like me, you store passwords in that account or accounts, and that needs to be the most secure password, probably as secure as your banking password. And I'm not here to tell you and preach about, banking and stuff like that, but take the time to update your passwords and don't leave them.

[00:08:53] I logged into a software that I don't use that often, and it told me that my password had been in place since 2010. Yikes. You really should update your passwords and not let them go for years. I'm not gonna sit here and tell you should do it every quarter or twice a year or once a year, whatever works for you.

[00:09:18] The thing I wanna shed light on, although this is could be a boring topic for you and it's not glamorous and flash. It's security, but it is one of the biggest pieces that can affect your business. In some cases, and I don't have the numbers in front of me to share this with you. Small businesses that get hacked or their data gets breached, some don't survive that.

[00:09:52] It costs them their business. I never want that to happen to. Small businesses, entrepreneurs, creatives, all of us work really hard. Most of us treat our business as part of our family. Good, bad, indifferent, and you've probably put in a lot of time, energy, and effort, and the few extra seconds that it might take.

[00:10:24] To have a more secure password is so worth it. And while I'm saying this to you, I'm also saying this to myself, my team members, my family about taking the time to make it more complex and really coming up with a sentence is the way to go about it. If you're a person like me and I have, I don't know, hundreds of softwares, that we have accounts with, that we utilize whatever wording you wanna say there.

[00:10:58] I have many, many, many logins and it's beneficial for me to utilize a password keeper. As I mentioned, I've used LastPass for quite a while. I will say one other thing about that. I don't knock free tools and information, things like that when you're talking about a password keeper or some kind of software that keeps your passwords, make sure you do your research.

[00:11:28] This is one of those cases that it is probably in your best interest to pay for that software, pay for a script subscription, a small monthly fee, whatever that is, because you need a software that is encrypted, that is very secure to store that information. And that just comes down to doing research.

[00:11:50] Now, I will share additional information about this topic in my free Facebook group. If you're not already a member, I encourage you to do so , you can find it under WedPro Business Community and I drop additional tips and information in that group. I hope that you found this information useful.

[00:12:14] As I mentioned, this probably isn't gonna be the most popular topic, but it is one that all of us as business owners and entrepreneurs should embrace and make sure our information is the most secure it can possibly be. Didn't mention a whole lot about it, but most of the time we have additional client information stored on our computers, on our devices, and making sure that you have a password on your phone, on your tablet, because if you hold client information there and you lose and or those devices get stole, How is that information secure?

[00:12:59] And then all of this is not to scare you, it is just a shed light on making sure you get some type of security plan in place for your business. I'll share with you, we do use, different softwares with Google Drive and Dropbox, and there are different levels of security inside those program. Most people just want the easiest login and they don't wanna have multiple steps.

[00:13:26] But I hope some of the information I covered will l allow you the space to consider, maybe I should do two-factor authentication, although it will take me two to three seconds or five seconds, or 30 seconds longer. It is a better layer of security for my business and my clients. At any time, if you have any questions, please feel free to post in the Facebook group or you can reach out on other social media channels or shoot me an email.

[00:13:58] Until next time, everyone, take care and keep working on your business.