Digital technology: be preventative and stay competitive

This guest blog post is provided by the Office of Literacy and Essential Skills, which aims to improve the skills Canadians need to adapt and succeed at work, and Public Safety Canada's Get Cyber Safe campaign which aims to raise awareness and educate Canadians about cyber security and the simple steps they can take to protect themselves online.

Technology has fundamentally changed the way businesses operate in Canada. The technologies that enable businesses to be innovative and productive are transforming the ways in which information is obtained, processed, and communicated.  Whether you are just starting up or growing your business, you and your employees need to have the digital skills and knowledge necessary to take advantage of new opportunities and stay cyber safe.

Improve your Skills
This can be the single biggest advantage for productivity and competitiveness in today's digital world. However, buying new software and equipment might be a waste of money if it's not used safely and efficiently. For example, you may see an increase in error rates and workplace injuries. Use the Computer Use Self-Assessment tool to better understand your digital skills strengths and areas for improvement in order to use technology to your benefit.

Know the Threats
Big or small, businesses have information that cyber criminals want such as customer or financial information. In fact, your business may be more vulnerable to attacks than larger enterprises that employ full-time IT support, since attackers know you may have limited resources to invest in IT security. Some online threats to be aware of include email scams, phishing attacks, and viruses. Knowing where these come from and what they look like is the first step to protecting your business.

Get Cyber Safe
Keep your computers and networks safe by identifying and mitigating cyber risks. Start by putting practices and policies in place that promote IT security and train employees on the use of new technology. Following a few simple IT safety practices will go a long way in protecting your business from incurring costly and dangerous cyber-attacks.

Visit for tips on running a cybersafe business, and share this infographic on how cyber crime can affect your company.

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