This post was originally published on December 7, 2017, and has been updated for comprehensiveness and accuracy.
Tis’ the season!
It’s that time of the year again. You’ve decorated the office, planned the office holiday party, and exchanged gifts. But have you taken the necessary steps to secure your business for the holidays?
Here are 5 security tips to keep your business safe during the holiday season:
1. Review Security Policies With Employees
One of the first steps to securing your business is to review your company security policy with all of your employees. Confirm everyone is on the same page and understands company security procedures. Some points to review include:
- Protocol for locking up valuables while everyone is away on the holiday break.
- The company cyber security policy, especially if employees are going to be working remotely or traveling over the holidays.
- Rules about inviting guests into the workplace for holiday functions.
- Your security action plan in case of an emergency.
- Days when the office is completely closed and when employees can return to the workplace.
2. Ensure All Security Equipment Is Working
Once you’ve gone over the company security policy and procedures, test all security equipment to make sure it is working properly, including:
- Alarm systems
- Cyber security software
- Smart locks and access control systems
- Panic buttons
- Surveillance cameras
After you’ve tested all of your company’s security equipment, check to make sure nothing will obstruct it, like holiday decorations.
While you’re evaluating your equipment and making sure it is functioning properly, now is a great time to evaluate if your gear needs an upgrade. Check out our guide on upgrading your security plan if you are ready for something new.
3. Update Alarm Company on Special Holiday Hours
Your business may have a different work schedule during the holidays. Let your monitoring alarm service know when the business is closed so that they can watch for unusual activity. Also, review your emergency call list, and update it if necessary. If the alarm does sound, the alarm company will need to have the right contact information.
Additionally, you also want your clients to know about your modified business hours during the holiday season. You can update your business hours on Google My Business listings or post updates on your social media or website.
4. Be Cautious Using Public Wi-Fi
Checking your business email using public Wi-Fi can seem harmless, but it’s not. Your personal information and confidential business data can be left vulnerable.
If employees are working remotely over break, protect your company’s data with a Virtual Protected Network (VPN). A VPN allows your employees to retrieve resources from your comp
5. Lock Up
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s extremely important. Lock all of your business entrances and windows when you leave for the holiday break, as well as individual offices that contain sensitive data.
If your business has an access control system, review all codes and confirm which employees have access to certain areas.
Even if you feel like you’ve done everything to prepare your business security this season, don’t be afraid to go through this list again just to double-check. Santa makes his list and checks it twice—so should you.