It is the worst nightmare for any business owner. You arrive at the office and find that there has been a break in. Suddenly your sense of security is shattered, and your thoughts immediately go to what has been taken and what data may have been lost.
So what do you do now, in the aftermath of that break in? How do you rebuild your sense of security, and how do you put the business you have worked so hard to create back on track? The steps you take in the immediate aftermath of a break in can make all the difference, and the sooner you get started on your rebuilding strategy the better off you, and your business, will be.
Assess the Damage
The first thing you must do to rebuild your security in the wake of a break in is determine exactly what was taken and what repercussions that theft could have for your business. Did the thieves make off with prototypes, blueprints and other proprietary information, or were they content to steal equipment that has intrinsic value but does not put your business directly at risk?
Assessing the damage will help you in many ways, from making the insurance claim process easier to preparing for any potential backlash from your clients and customers. It is important to do a thorough analysis of what went wrong, and what you can do to prevent a repeat of the burglary.
Strengthen Your Defenses
If your business suffered from a break in, there was obviously a breakdown in your security protocols. It is important to find out exactly where those weak points are, so you can do what you can to shore up your defenses and foil any future attempts to victimize your business and your employees.
Now is the time to change the locks, invest in security software and other protocols and look for technological solutions to the deficiencies you have identified. Now is also the time to look at the access you provide to employees, since former workers who retain their keys could pose a danger to your business going forward.
Address Your Data Security As Well
Addressing the physical security of your business is an essential part of recovering and rebuilding your business after a break in. Whether you change the locks, install a new deadbolt security system or upgrade to an electronic access system, you need to shore up your defenses and address any deficiencies you have found.
You also need to address the security of your data, since a future break in could put that information at risk. If you have not already done so, encrypting the hard drives in your desktop and laptop computers is a good place to start. While no security protocol is foolproof, these basic steps can help protect you in the aftermath of a break in and beyond.
Being the victim of a break in is always disconcerting, but it can serve as a wakeup call for you and your business. If your business has been victimized, you do not have time to waste. Assessing the situation, addressing deficiencies and protecting your data can all help you recover and emerge stronger on the other side of the break in.