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Broadband and information technology are powerful tools for small businesses to reach new markets and increase sales and productivity. However, cybersecurity threats are real and businesses must implement the best tools and tactics to protect themselves, their customers, and their data. Visit www.fcc.gov/cyberplanner to create a free customized Cyber Security

Planning guide for your small business and visit www.dhs.gov/stopthinkconnect to download resources on cyber security awareness for your business. Here are ten key cybersecurity tips to protect your small business:

1. Train employees in security principles. Establish basic security practices and policies for employees, such as requiring strong passwords and establish appropriate Internet use guidelines, that detail penalties for violating company cybersecurity policies. Establish rules of behavior describing how to handle and protect customer information and other vital data.

2. Protect information, computers, and networks from cyber attacks. Keep clean machines: having the latest security software, web browser, and operating system are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats. Set antivirus software to run a scan after each update. Install other key software updates as soon as they are available.

3. Provide firewall security for your Internet connection. A firewall is a set of related programs that prevent outsiders from accessing data on a private network. Make sure the operating system’s firewall is enabled or install free firewall software available online. If employees work from home, ensure that their home system(s) are protected by a firewall.

4. Create a mobile device action plan. Mobile devices can create significant security and management challenges, especially if they hold confidential information o