The Internet is a useful place for nonprofits to be, but it can also be a veritable danger zone for your technology. If you aren’t careful, you could find yourself on the receiving end of a malicious virus that could severely hamper all the hard work your organization has done.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways to keep your information out of harm’s way before you dive into the web.
In the book “Nonprofit Management 101,” Holly Ross, executive director at the Drupal Association in Portland, Ore., encouraged nonprofit managers to take the security of your devices seriously. She recommended the following five techniques to keep your operation running smoothly:
- Firewall: This is basically a gate between the outside world and your network of computers. It’s essential that you have a firewall set up to keep spammers, hackers, and other malicious people from infiltrating your network to use it for nefarious purposes.
- Antivirus protection: Antivirus software should be installed on each of the computers on your network. Worms and viruses continue to be written every day, so it’s essential that you purchase the regular update packages for whichever program you choose to use.
- Backup: Most people view backing up as insurance for extreme situations such as natural disasters, but the backup is most important in many day-to-day situations.
- Passwords: The simplest thing you can do to protect your organization’s data and files is to put in place a strong password policy. Ensure that staff are both using different passwords for logins and changing their passwords frequently.
- Physical security: Equipment like laptops, printers, and desktop computers should be secured to desks with cable locks so they can’t be removed.