A church sign once said, "Whoever stole our AC units, keep one. It's going to be hot where you're going!" however, unlike protecting yourself from common theft, a lot of churches do not look at the threat of cyber security, which can lead to identity theft. When it comes to cyber security, industries across all sectors have to practice good Internet security to protect private information. Otherwise, you could be at risk for any number of threats:
Check to see if your church insurance policy will provide you with cyber liability insurance to mitigate the threat. In addition, practice proper safety. For example, always keep your antivirus updated and never turn it off, even if you want to get something done faster. You should also keep your software updated to avoid exploits and have a firewall.
We also recommend creating an IT policy for when people use your computers. You might understand the full gravity of what a data breach could do to your church, but not everyone at your church will understand without a policy. With an IT policy, you can teach people what to do and what to avoid that would create a problem for your organization. If your church encountered a data breach, you can purchase church insurance for protection against regulatory fines. A data security fine can reach up to $250,000, so it becomes vital to protect yourself.
Think cyber crime cannot happen to your church? Think again. You often hear about hackers attacking big corporations, but they like to target smaller organizations as well. Why would a hacker choose a smaller target like a church? The answer is that they are an easier target. Small organizations do not practice the same level of cyber security that you see with a bigger organization. For that reason, it becomes easier for a hacker to steal the data of a church or small business, compared to a Fortune 500 company that has a host of defenses in place.
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