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How online businesses can avoid breaches when hiring freelancers

Contractual workers, such as freelancers, are becoming increasingly common in the business world. With their varying roles, they are exposed to different levels of business data. This raises an important question: how can businesses protect themselves from online threats like data breaches?

Here are some crucial ways to protect your business.

Educate during the onboarding process

Training freelancers about online threats from the start is crucial. They need to be aware of:

  • Phishing attacks: Deceptive emails that can trick them into revealing sensitive information. Educate these workers about how to recognize and avoid such scams.
  • Email intrusion: Cybercriminals may pretend to be trustworthy and trick freelancers into giving them access to your data.
  • Unsecured networks: Freelancers often work remotely and use public Wi-Fi networks that may not be secure. An unsecured network could expose your business’s sensitive data to external threats. Educate them about the risks of using unsecured networks and provide guidelines for safer practices, such as using a virtual private network (VPN).

Discussing these threats early on can help freelancers recognize and avoid them, enhancing your business’s security.

Only communicate in secure environments

You should communicate and share files on platforms that have strong encryption to protect your data. Also, avoid using old platforms or software. Old platforms or software don’t have the latest security updates, which can make them vulnerable to attacks. It’s crucial to update your platforms regularly to get the most secure, current versions, which are less likely to be compromised by threats like ransomware attacks.

Limit to only necessary information

A simple way to protect your business data is to limit access. It would be best if you only shared access to the information they need. This way, even if a breach does occur, the potential damage remains limited.

Address liability in contracts

You can prevent accidental information leaks or breaches with thorough freelancer contracts. These contracts should outline your security expectations, provide guidelines on handling sensitive information and spell out the financial penalties or termination of the agreement in case of a breach. This ensures freelancers are aware of their obligations and the potential consequences of non-compliance.

To create a legally sound contract, consider seeking an attorney. An attorney can help tailor these contracts to your specific needs and provide additional protection for your business.