Here are 10 different ways that you can help protect your IT systems:

1) Passwords are forever. Maybe this seems like common sense, but cyber breaches and attacks happen because of lack of or weak passwords. Simple passwords are not enough; they must be unique and contain letters, numbers and symbols. Usernames that are also unique will help as well. If it is an organisational IT system, and you choose to keep a master list with all passwords, remember to encrypt and protect that too.

2) Limit exposure; design your infrastructure to be as risk-averse as possible. Use different servers and domains, as well as usernames for each of your users. Monitor regularly, and make sure the design is a focus, and that you take your time doing so.

3) Train users; make sure to provide at least basic training for the employees who will be using your technology and IT systems. This could cover how to create good passwords, how to recognise fraudulent emails and websites, and how to take precautions to lessen exposure to risks on and offline.

4) If you do not know the sender; do not open the email. Unknown senders and unfamiliar attachments should be avoided to be cautious, and make sure that computers and the IT infrastructure stay safe. There are different types of believable attachments that may come from what appears to be a reliable source such as your bank or a government agency.

5) Hang up; make sure to hang up on unknown callers. If you think it may be a scam, it most likely is, so you should avoid these calls, and hang up as soon as you can. Block the number to prevent calls from these people in the future.

6) Get virus protection and detection software, and renew the license and keep it up to date, to help you detect any viruses that may be coming your way. Make sure it is installed on all user computers and devices that leverage your IT system.

7) Sensitive information and data have no place on a cloud or on a platform that is not property of your organization. Cloud computing platforms are great for collaborative, and remote work, and make everything accessible to everyone. This is great until it comes to sensitive data or information.

8) You get what you pay for; make sure to spend the money where it is well placed, such as on virus protection software and IT security measures. It is an area where you get what you pay for, and it is worth investing in. Even the hardware is essential.

9) Strategic buy-in; create strategies and processes to ensure that your IT systems stay a priority and that there are support and visibility from all members, and levels, of your organisation.

10) Background checks can help; IT infrastructure and systems are only as good as the users. Make sure you know for definite who you are hiring, and for existing employees, create user agreements that set the parameters on how they are permitted and able to use their hardware, software, and the shared systems and applications.