CYBER SECURITY is becoming a major talking point with all businesses, however, the issues around the hospitality industry are specific. In no other main stream industry do more people who are not employed within the location ( ie the Public) expect to have access to the internet for work, social media and internet calls, and this is where a major problem can occur.
We have surveyed many pubs, clubs and restaurants in the past 5 years and in general the way that the vast majority of owners and managers operate is that they open their WiFi connection to the public by giving them the WiFi code, or posting it on the wall of the bar.
In the worst case scenario, this allows anyone to access all the systems within the building connected, this can be the back office computers, printers and other hardware connected to the network.
Access to these systems can be controlled if you have a domain and everyone has to log in strictly with usernames and passwords, but again in the hospitality industry this is rare, usually the systems are “home user” operating systems that are just plugged in and shared on the network, some may put basic passwords, however these are ineffective when accessed over a network.
The fact that malware and virus code can replicate directly over a network means that your business is at risk, the cyber attacks with ransomware are increasing and any system with the ransomware loaded but not triggered will infect very quickly indeed across a network and there is very little that you can do in this type of “Open” environment to stop it.
But all is not lost, some basic precautions and configuration can help:
- Separate your “Internal” and “Guest” Networks
- Only ever give out the “Guest” wifi code
- Logically separate your wifi users so any infection will not infect everyone else connected to your guest WiFi
- Hide the Internal SSID for the network
- Change both codes regularly
- Use a hardware firewall with malware and browsing protection built in
- Use domain passwords on all systems
- Keep peripherals like printers on the internal network
- Have your network surveyed for potential problems
If you are happy to complete the basics of the items above then doing so will ensure that you are safer than you are today from cyber threats.
If you are not confident in checking your network, then we can do this for you providing a report on the current state of your network and a set of recommendations for securing your business against attack, both from your Customers and from the internet.
Call us today on 01948 820787 and we will be delighted to go through the options you have.
We can provide the advice, the products, the support and the insight to ensure you have the best protection available against modern threats.