Security is one essential factor you shouldn't overlook when hosting an online event. Similar to the in-person ones, you want to ensure protection for your participants and the organization you represent. Cybercriminals may not pose physical threats, but they could significantly impact your emotional and financial well-being. And as a leader, you must know how to approach critical situations such as cyberattacks.
In this article, let's tackle why you need cybersecurity when hosting online events and some solutions to achieve effective cybersecurity.
Reasons Why Cybersecurity Is Essential for Online Events
Prevent Possible Session Interruptions
During the early stages of the COVID-19 outbreak, hackers frequently had trouble intruding into Zoom sessions, as you might recall. They were then free to do anything they pleased, such as making loud sounds to disrupt the gathering or displaying offensive material. If you don't employ a secure platform and maintain the technical integrity of your event, the same could occur during your virtual event. The value you promised guests could be lost if you let a hacker compromise or remove presentation materials, forcing you to issue significant unaffordable refunds.
When hosting an online event, sometimes you want to earn money from it. It could take the shape of paid admission tickets, sponsorships, exhibitor spaces, etc. However, you need to be able to handle those clients' payments securely to achieve this. If not, you can face financial consequences and lose their trust if you breach their data.
Keep the Integrity of Paid Admission
Many virtual event presenters can earn money from their work by charging guests for admission. In this case, cybersecurity protections are essential to stop hackers from entering the event for free. If not, there's a good possibility the information will spread, and your paid participants can feel taken advantage of or disrespected. Naturally, it decreases your income as well.
Protect Your Reputation
Your professional reputation could soar with a well-run virtual event. On the other hand, if not executed well, or even worse, breaches of the sensitive data of participants will severely harm that reputation. In this case, you must safeguard your event to protect this particular event and also the rest of your professional career. Once you encounter a threat and do nothing about it, it compromises your reputation.
How to Adopt An Effective Cybersecurity for Online Events
Hosting an online event involves collecting information from your participants, such as their contact details, location, and bank information, if they need to make a payment. Doing this enables you to analyze your participants and curate an experience specific to them. However, cyberattacks being on the rise mean that this information is vulnerable to threats, regardless of quality and scale. Hence, proper implementation of cybersecurity measures should be your top priority.
Safeguard Your Event Access
Regardless of your event size, ensure that they are password-protected. A password should have a minimum of 11 characters and contain both letters and symbols. As a result, the entropy rises, and the breakage takes longer.
Moreover, give the password only to the people you trust. There are numerous instances where a hacker interfered in an event because of the absence of this measure. That's why don't disregard even these seemingly insignificant measures because they may occasionally be just what you need.
Keep Your Network and Connection Protected
Cyberattacks frequently happen against networks that are not protected, especially if you're using a private connection. It implies that the attackers can easily breach your network connection and access your computer and your internet connection session (unless your internet provider takes the appropriate precautions). Whatever the occasion, this is not good for your organization. Likewise, don't ignore this point.
Monitor the Event
That applies to all kinds of activities at the event, especially the ones you can observe in your software equipment related to your network and connection. There are a lot of available solutions for that, either included in the meeting hosting software or as standalone network activity monitoring programs. Make sure to verify at least some of them; investing the time will pay off in terms of your virtual security.
Observe the Hosts’ Cybersecurity Measures
You'll probably collaborate with the event host unless you organize a small gathering for your buddies. If the event is an internet concert, it might be the sponsoring business. Therefore, ensure the individuals in charge of this event know the significance of the previously mentioned points. They must be prepared to take all essential precautions and even go above and beyond them to safeguard every user who participates in the online event they are organizing.
Cybersecurity is essential when hosting online events because so many people may be attending, and the security and safety of their data are at stake. Whether you're planning a lecture for hundreds of people or a small gathering for one team within your organization, it doesn't matter. Any of these people may be vulnerable to a range of cyber threats, from minor disruptions that can be inconvenient to data theft and virus assault. One of the secrets to success may be to face this issue head-on. Therefore, taking all necessary precautions like implementing a risk assessment to safeguard the event is more than reasonable.