The marketing industry has changed immensely in the past two decades. Think about it: back in the 80s and early 90s, marketing teams didn’t have the ability to communicate to millions of people instantly. No, they had to reserve ad space for TV stations and take advantage of physical marketing. Nowadays, however, marketers have the Internet. Digital marketing is the new wave, and marketers have tons of platforms and tools to take advantage of.
Since many marketing teams work online, the data they handle—their communications, their ideas, their personal information—is constantly at risk of being stolen and/or leaked. Many online marketers treat cybersecurity seriously as a result. Today, let’s go over a few ways that online marketers can protect their data.
3 Strategies to Improve Security
1. Install a VPN to Encrypt Your Network
It’s been a little more than a year since most of the world went into lockdown due to the COVID-19 virus. During this time, those who were lucky enough not to lose their jobs due to the pandemic were forced to work from home, and since online marketing can be done from home, many people started looking towards online marketing and similar jobs.
It’s true! Many online marketers work from home. Due to the nature of the job, that’s not surprising. Marketing teams can easily communicate via online platforms (Slack, Trello, Zoom), and as long as the marketer can stick to a strict schedule, there’s not much to lose in terms of efficiency.
There is one issue: public networks. While many remote workers have been working from home due to public places being either closed or at risk of COVID infection, some still go out to the local coffee place to do their work, including marketers. Public networks are dangerous to work on. Why? Their lack of security and encryption makes public networks perfect hunting grounds for cybercriminals.
If you are an online marketer looking to unwind at a local deli while working, it’s advised you don’t connect to the network. However, if you need to, download a VPN. The main VPN use is to encrypt your data enough that any cybercriminal lurking on the network will be unable to view your data. Even if they manage to get their hands on your data, it will be unreadable, unusable.
2. Stay Vigilant of Online Scams and Links
Two decades. Online scammers have had a little more than two decades to improve their scams, learn what does and doesn’t work, and how they can trick a new generation of Internet users into handing out personal information. From phishing scammers that rely on social engineering to cybercriminals that send out malicious email links hoping someone clicks on them, there’s no shortage of danger on the Internet. Going online nowadays feels like walking through a minefield.
Online marketers spend the bulk of their job online. As a result, they are a prime target for cybercriminals. Remember, data is gold, and online marketers handle quite a lot of data throughout their day-to-day.
Online marketers need to take some time out of their day to learn how to identify common scams and warning signs. Phishing identifiers, what constitutes a dangerous link, how to tell legitimate emails from scam emails: these are important cybersecurity tips that could save a marketer their job.
Fortunately, there are various online resources—free online resources—specifically to help identify online threats. These don’t take too long to read through and should be an online marketer’s first step on their to-do list after work.
3. Use Strong, Unique Passwords for Your Accounts
One tradition cybersecurity experts never tire of is the annual 20xx password roundup, where major cybersecurity corporations round up the most common passwords used throughout that year. Let’s just say that cybersecurity experts don’t enjoy these lists because of how good these passwords are.
With passwords like 123456, password, and abc123, it’s no wonder why so many fall victim to hacked accounts. But what happens if an online marketer has their work accounts hacked? Well, not only could they lose access to their projects, but they also put their company/clients in danger of having their data stolen.
For this reason, all online marketers should invest in a good password manager. Password managers will generate a strong, unique password for you to use then encrypt your password data so no one can steal it. If you’re not using a password manager, you’re putting your data at risk. Remember that.
The marketing industry has changed for the better since the inception of the Internet. However, online marketers need to tread carefully, as one mistake could mean the loss of their and their client’s data. With these three tips, online marketers will be able to secure their data.