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Franchise Businesses: Online Security Matters

Franchise Businesses: Online Security Matters

By FranchiseKing, Guest Blogger
Published: December 16, 2014

Like you don’t have enough to worry about when you’re setting up your franchise business.

There are many things you’ll need to do before you can open your doors before the money hopefully starts rolling in.

But, this post isn’t about those things.

It’s about the things you may have not yet thought about. Like online security.

Your Franchise Business Will Be Online

Several parts of your new franchise business will be online.

  • You may have your own franchise website…or one that your franchisor sets up and controls.
  • You may open up a Twitter account or a Facebook account for your new business.
  • You’ll definitely have one or more email accounts.

Some of your transactions may be online, too. For example, if you’re required to have a credit card terminal, it may run off *the phone line or the cloud

The bottom line: Your franchise business will be online. And, it will be exposed to all of the different things security-wise, that all small businesses have to deal with all the time.

Two Types Of Online Security Breeches   

Cyber attacks

These can be devastating. They have the potential to wipe out lots of data, and can harm your business.

From *Wikipedia:

A Cyber attack is any type of offensive maneuver employed by individuals or whole organizations that targets computer information systems, infrastructures, computer networks, and/or personal computer devices by various means of malicious acts usually originating from an anonymous source that either steals, alters, or destroys a specified target by hacking into a susceptible system.

A cyber attack is not something you’re going to want to deal with as the owner of a franchise.

Your franchisor should have cyber-security measures in place at headquarters. To make sure, it’s a good idea to include questions about online security in your *list of research questions you ask the franchise representative before you buy a franchise. Even better, if you pay a visit to franchise headquarters before you buy the franchise, ask the IT team if they have a comprehensive online security program in place.

Email viruses

Viruses that infect your computer systems through email are sometimes called mass mailing worms. You may have experienced one or more of these nasty infections in the past. The worms usually get in when you open an attachment in a legit-looking email.

In this context, the word “legit” means an email that looks like it’s coming from someone you know personally – or even a company you do business with.

The problem is, it may actually be from someone you know who’s unknowingly passing along a virus to you. So, when you open that attachment, your email client becomes infected. And here’s where it gets interesting; it starts sending the worm – the virus – to your contacts list. As your contacts get it, they start unknowingly spreading the virus around to their contacts and so forth. The lesson: Be careful when opening email attachments. And, make sure you have a high-quality anti-virus tool setup on your local computer…on every computer located in your franchise business.

More Online Security Tips For Your Franchise Business

Unfortunately, there’s not an online security tool that’s 100% effective. Hackers and their ilk are always coming up with new ways to launch online attacks. Security firms are constantly coming up with new ways to combat them. It’s a cat and mouse game that’s being played out all over the world, 24/7.

This article isn’t meant to frighten you. It’s meant to educate you on what “could” happen. It’s up to you to secure your online assets.  

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has compiled a list of things you can do to help protect your business from online security breaches. You may want to print it out or bookmark it if you’re feeling eco-friendly.   

Here’s the link: 10 Cyber-Security Tips For Small Businesses

Do you feel your business is secure?

*Non US Government links

About the Author:

Joel Libava

Guest Blogger

The Franchise King®, Joel Libava, is the author of Become a Franchise Owner! and recently launched Franchise Business University.