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As covid-19 has shown recently, disasters do happen – and they can have a devastating impact for businesses that aren’t prepared. Below are some of the most serious disasters that businesses can fall victim to and how you can protect your business.
A fire could destroy your businesses premises and resources – and worse could harm you, employees and customers.
Preventative action is the best way to protect against a fire. This could include exercising caution with electric cables and removing flammable materials like paper.
In the event of a fire, it could also be compulsory that you have certain measures in place such as having clear fire exits and owning a fire extinguisher. It could be worth investing in a high quality alarm and sprinkler system that meets various fire regulations such as BS 8269. Having a fire drill in place could also be important so that employees know how to react in a fire. You may be able to organize a fire safety audit to ensure that other measures are taken specific to your company.
Certain businesses may be located in areas that are deemed ‘high-risk’ when it comes to certain natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes or hurricanes. These disasters could similarly destroy your premises and resources, while putting people in danger.
Preventing these natural disasters isn’t possible, so you need to take measures to protect your business from the potential damage. This could include making sure that your premises is flood-proofed or that foundations can withstand an earthquake. You should also have a drill in place so that employees know how to react when natural disaster strikes.
Small businesses are common targets for burglars. A burglary could result in important information or equipment being stolen – and recovery could be incredibly costly.
You should make sure that your premises has adequate security measures in place to prevent a burglary. High-quality locks, burglar alarms, security cameras and security lighting can all reduce the chance of a burglary occurring. A security company may be able to do an audit of your premises, as well carrying out penetration testing.
Small businesses are also commonly targeted by cybercriminals. Such attacks could be made to steal important information or they may be a means of gaining a ransom (AKA ransomware).
Cyberattacks can be prevented by having strong security software in place and by using passwords and encryption where possible. Training employees to avoid clicking on suspicious emails and sites (software can warn against these threats) and to exercise caution with passwords can also make an impact. Digital security companies may be able to help conduct an audit for you and recommend any measures that they think are suitable.
Many businesses are also victims of fraud. This can come in many different forms – it can include personal injury fraud, email fraud or even business identity theft. In all cases, it could result in money being extorted and your reputation being negatively impacted.
The best way to beat fraud is to question everything and do checks where possible. Follow up strange emails asking for personal information by ringing up the sender, and record phonecalls and use CCTV to catch out fraudulent customers. Trademarks meanwhile may help to protect your intellectual property.
Measures you can take against any disaster…
When it comes to recovery, there are a few measures that you can take against any disaster.
The first is to financially repair. This could include taking out insurance such as commercial property insurance or cyberinsurance. Setting aside an emergency fund can also be useful in case your cash flow is affected for a period of time.
It’s worth also backing up all data and information. Cloud computing is the best way to do this – this can allow you to still access your data remotely from another location or device if you have been hacked or if your premises has been destroyed.