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Lindsey Patterson

Why Your Business Should Use Patent Data Collection Systems

3 min read

person using MacBook Pro

Having any type of business is something to be proud of. Whether or not you have a small business or if you have plans to start one soon, you need to be ready and prepared to get this business going and be free of any problems. There will be many different problems that come up with any business. This is something to be ready for, but there are now many great ways to be able to do this. All you have to do is have some patent data research so that you can have enough knowledge in this field.

 

Data Collections 

 

If you have a small business, it is important and recommended that you learn about the different data collections that are available. It is essential that you are familiarized with the ways that you can store your data and collect it the best way possible.

 

If you have patent collection data systems, this means that you have legal authorization of the documents that represent your sales activity. This will be able to give you the benefit of having a close link relationship with the field of purchases.

 

It will also allow you to have access to the patent offices that can help guide you and assist you in anything you may need help with.

 

Another benefit that comes with using this collection system is that you will have the access to getting a full and detailed report of the activity throughout the year. There are many things that can happen throughout the year. For instance, you will have access to any inventory problems, technical problems, etc. All of the above listed are extremely important to have access to. It is necessary to be able to have the documents to back up with evidence in case there is a need.

 

Familiarize Yourself 

 

Being familiarized with these data collections will help you learn more about the ways that you can keep track of your sales and be on top of what products are selling and what products are struggling. By having the patent collection, your business will be able to keep track of any activity that goes on.

 

Having this type of access is something that is great to have because this means that you will be able to solve these issues faster and with more reliability. As you may already know, owning any type of business comes with dealing with many problems, some that are seen and some that are not seen. Being able to deal with those problems in a fast and reliable way will help you stand out as a company.

 

Conclusion 

 

By following the tips and tricks listed above, you will be able to grow your small business and have more knowledge in this field as well. It is essential that you follow these helpful tips and start using this data collection system to grow your business at a faster and more secure way. 

Lindsey Patterson

Getting to Know Your Customer During COVID

4 min read

white open signage

So the storm of Covid-19 is not gone yet. Many businesses have closed shops, but luckily, you're still standing. But maybe you feel like your relationship with your customers is not as strong as before. It's like you don't know each other anymore. So, how do you rekindle that relationship? Here is a small guide to help you get to know your customer during Covid-19.

 

Check On Your Customers

 

At the time of the coronavirus, you don't need to bombard your customers with marketing messages all over. You can change your approach a bit and let them know it's not only about getting their money. This is the time to bring out your humanity side. Check on your customer's wellbeing and let them know that you care. You can also let them know that you are customizing your products and services to meet their needs based on the current situation.

 

Leverage the Power Of Social Media

 

Customers are not coming to the shops anymore, and when they do, they don't stay long. Social media should be your communication channel, where you get to connect and interact with your customers. According to a CMO study, up to 84% of businesses use social media to build their brands, and 54% depend on it for customer retention. If you've used it for any of these, it won't be hard using it to get to know your customers more during Covid-19. Start a conversation on social media that will get your customers engaged. Use this opportunity to know them passively and actively.

 

Let Them Know You Value Them

 

There is no wonderful feeling that comes with the knowledge that you're valued somewhere. Getting your customers to know that you value them is one of the ways to create a good connection during Covid-19. Showing them gratitude will go a long way to see your business grow. If possible, go out of your way to demonstrate your support to the community and empathy. People need each other during this pandemic; hence it's a give and take situation.

 

Make Customer Engagement Your Business Culture

 

For any business that wants to create loyalty, customer engagement is something you cannot ignore. The pandemic period needs this more since this is the time that many businesses are losing their customers. You need to be there always to understand your customer needs and challenges. Your company should build that curiosity culture that goes beyond one on one call. If you get a new customer, go out of your way to get to know them better. Don't just start making your sales pitch without inquiring more about your customers.

 

Go Digital With Your Sales

 

Coronavirus has awakened many people about the reality of technology, especially in the business world. If your business was online only for the purposes of marketing, but when it comes to selling, you go back offline, it’s time to rethink. In fact, virtual selling is now the new storm taking over the world. You need to meet your customers online least you end up losing all of them. So, pick yourself up and start running your business in the virtual way.

 

Conclusion

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed customer habits, and you need to step up to understand those new habits. Your business might still be dealing with old customers, but they seem completely different from what you used to know. Go the extra mile to get to know your customers better during this period. This will help you interact with them better and understand how to package your marketing message. 

Lindsey Patterson

Helpful Tips to Improve Your Posture When You Work From Home

3 min read

Greenville, SC Chiropractor | Carolina Active Health ChiropracticCorrect  Posture: Critical for Good Health

With the situation of the world regarding the pandemic, many people are forced to work from home. However, working from home without a proper home office desk can be a challenge when posture issues are concerned. But you cannot afford to put your body posture and general wellbeing at risk simply because you work from your couch or your bed. So, how do you ensure good posture while working from home? Here are helpful tips to consider.

 

Correct Your Working Set Up

 

The setup of your work area is an essential aspect of maintaining excellent posture while working from home. You need to have access to raised desktop computers, fancy spinny chairs, and workplace desk assessments that will guarantee you security and comfort. Many people think that people working from home carry out their tasks either on bed or sofa. The fancy bed and sofa may appear comfortable but not for working as they tend to put a strain on the back and neck. You must find some office chairs and tables to help improve your posture so that you can work better and longer.

 

Maintain a Healthy Sleep Routine

 

Just because you have your entire office at home doesn’t mean that you get up in the middle of the night to check some emails or finish a quick task. Respect your sleep time and work time and let each take their appropriate time and adequate hours. This means you cannot spend your working hours taking a nap neither can you sacrifice your sleep hours to work. Always ensure you get a good night’s sleep so that you feel fresh and comfortable when it’s time to work. This way, you won’t covet your bed when it’s time to finish some essential office work. Enough sleep will ensure increased productivity.

 

Find a Posture App

You can only understand the right posture while working from home if you have some help. Remember, you’re not an expert hence have no idea about perfect postures to put you in good shape. Luckily, you don’t need to contact your doctor for this because there are various posture corrector tools and apps you can use for this. It will only take you a few clicks on Google search before you find a perfect app for this.

 

Download An At-home Yoga App

 

Since you’ve transferred your workplace from your office to home, get yourself a Yoga app that will help you maintain a good posture during the working process. Exercise is a wonderful activity to keep you active and yoga makes a wonderful home exercise. But you’re not a yoga expert hence you need some help mastering those moves. The need for an office yoga app will work positively to increase your working posture. It will teach you an easy way to perform some essential moves without going out to find a yoga instructor. Yoga exercise helps loosen your muscles and strengthens your body.

 

Final Word

 

Having an excellent posture while working at home is not easy but you can do it if you commit. You should do all it takes to improve your posture if you need to be more productive and live a longer and healthy life. The above are just a few tips to help you correct your posture that you should implement. 

Lindsey Patterson

A Few Outstanding Tips For Companies to Achieve Success In 2020 and Beyond

3 min read

person touching and pointing MacBook Pro

 

Success is not going to happen overnight. It will take a lot of hard work to achieve the business goals you have. Below you will find some tips to help you find your way.

 

Two Tips For Entrepreneurs

 

1) Take a page from the Roman playbook. Do you remember the Colosseum? It is more than 1900 years old. To this day, it is(for the most part) still holding up. The Romans used the same concrete that we use today. And, to this day, there is a longevity that remains intact.

 

The Romans thought long-term in their goals. They did not count on some quick fix that would guarantee some artificial success. The Romans focused on high-quality. The Japanese counted on a specific niche(kind of like how the Kongo Gumi company focuses on Buddhist Temples).

 

2) Your company also has to solve a problem that is burning in people's minds. Say, for example, that you have an issue with software architecture. You would need to create some kind of service mesh that focuses on service-to-service communications.

 

One reason why some companies fail is the company does not tackle a direct issue concerning clients. The products are nice, but the issue is not fully addressed. That could be due to many factors, including the company associates not knowing what the problem is. You have to know what the problem is before you can take your product and services to the clients.



How You Can Place Yourself In A Better Position In 2020

 

1) You have to concentrate on the human connection. There is no way to succeed without it. Your clients want to know that you can relate to them(or at least most of them) in some way. Your customers do not want to see another company only interested in making a profit. This tip goes for anyone in business. Communication is vital.

 

2) Everyone in business is supposed to build a brand. You add value with everything you create. Some days will be better than others(in terms of creation and your content). There is no way you are going to be on point every day.

 

Focus every day on your creation and the content you curate. It is similar to those of us who are writers. You have to create something regularly. It is in your blood. Some days you will be off, but creation is key. You have to create even when you do not feel up to it. Exercising your creative process will help you build a stronger longevity.



One Final Way To Build Your Brand

 

You want to be a leader and not a follower. That also means that you cannot focus on likes on social media. Everyone is addicted to being liked. You want buyers. Someone who just "breezes in" to look is not going to help you. Those people are there merely for window dressing. Stop focusing on how many people "like" you. Focus more on how many people are actually buying from you. Those numbers will tell you how much revenue is coming in regularly.



Lindsey Patterson

All You Need to Know About Becoming a Patent Practitioner

3 min read

woman inside laboratory

Advances in science and technology have made it possible for more people and startups to innovate solutions to modern challenges. It is, therefore, wise for innovators to take steps to protect their work by patenting it. Otherwise, the innovator's idea might be taken by someone else who will use it as his own, denying the original inventor the benefits. Therefore, the services of a patent practitioner are vital to the innovator seeking to protect his invention.

 

Who is a Patent Practitioner?

 

Both a patent attorney and a patent agent are patent practitioners. They both must have a science or technology background. Taking and passing a Patent Bar Exam is mandatory for both. But while a patent attorney is a law school graduate licensed to practice law, a patent agent is not. The patent agent extent of law practice is as regards matters of patenting. The patent agent prepares patent applications then follows them up with USPTO. Patent practitioners play a vital role in helping inventors to protect their inventions.

 

How Does a Patent Practitioner Help Innovator's Patent Innovations?

 

The process of helping an innovator patent their innovation involves the following:

 

  • Advise inventors on whether their designs are patentable by conducting a thorough patent search. The search is vital to avoid rejection of the patent by the patent examiner.

 

  • Drafting patent applications using your technical background and training in patent law.

 

  • Understanding the fine details of the invention and communicating the same to other parties in the patent application.

 

  • Submit uspto ids containing the patent information to USPTO, the relevant government authority that receives and reviews patents. Full disclosure is vital to avoid stiff penalties later.

 

  • Act as the link between the patent examiner at USPTO and the inventor to make the patent application's necessary adjustments. The patent examiner will accept or reject the patent.

 

Why You Should Consider Being a Patent Practitioner

 

Patent practitioners play a vital role in helping the innovator to patent their innovation. Not patenting an invention will lead to loss of ownership rights for the innovator. A patent practitioner allows the innovator to own the creation legally. The inventor will, therefore, enjoy profits from his product without interference by competitors.

 

As a patent practitioner, you will enjoy practicing the prestigious law profession, even with your technical background. You will also get a chance to serve humanity by creating a level playing field in innovations. Additionally, you will play an essential role in encouraging designs that are the solutions to modern problems in society. An innovator who knows they will receive some protection will be glad to innovate more.

 

What Are the Requirements For Becoming a Patent Practitioner?

 

If you have the following traits, then consider becoming a patent practitioner:

 

Good knowledge of science or technology

 

Above-average writing skills

 

Excellent communication skills

 

Excellent understanding of patent law

 

Take and pass the Patent Bar Exam

 

Be registered patent practitioners



Conclusion

 

The government issues patents to give the innovators full rights over their inventions. Interested parties will not be able to copy the design and use it for their benefit. A patent practitioner plays a vital role in helping the innovator to patent their innovation. The practitioner is knowledgeable in both the patent law and the technical field. Additionally, a patent practitioner must be of good character and high moral standing. 

Lindsey Patterson

Into the World Of Cyber Security and More

3 min read

The internet is a great place of knowledge, enjoyment, connection and business. It over the years has slowly become integrated into society becoming essential for many people throughout the globe. With the internet improving and being useful toward many, there are many issues that people face when browsing online. That issue is being able to maintain good security. Since many people use the internet for social and business purposes, they can become easy prey for viruses and hackers if they are not careful.

 

More Into Cyber Security

 

What is cyber security is what some may ask when unfamiliar with the internet. Cyber security is essentially the act of protecting devices, programs and networks from attacks and damages. These attacks are against viruses, hackers and any other unauthorized access online. This does not only apply toward the PC but also phone, tablet and other electronic devices that offer internet access. Data online is becoming more and more sensitive since many are able to manage finances online and as the internet becomes more advanced so do the way of getting passed cyber security. If one is not careful, many can look at the sites and information that one has brought up online as well as sell the information toward others.

 

What to Look Out For

 

Though it can seem like a difficult and frightening process to overcome, there are ways to better keep safe online. One option is to make sure all apps on PC and other electronic devices are up to date. Many apps may need to be updated manually so it would be a good plan to check up on current apps weekly. Apps can be an easy target to be attacked with them being out of date. Another thing to look out for is scams. There are many websites online that if given personal financial information, the website will most likely still. There is also the chance of the website containing a dangerous virus. One must be cautious of such websites and not be so willing to give up personal information, especially if it is financial information. Also it should be noted that one should not click on pop up ads on other websites as they can bring them to another website that contains viruses.

 

Anti Viruses and Cyber Security Services



Even when following such methods, there is the chance that one can still get a virus. Another option to go with is to be able to install a good antivirus. An anti virus is a software that will be able to protect the device from online attacks. There are several to choose from and some have more appealing options than others. Just make sure you do your research before picking one. 



Conclusion

 

Cyber security is a crucial thing to have and maintain. Luckily there are options for many for security and methods to prevent cyber attacks. 

Lindsey Patterson

Ways to Achieve Your Financial Goals

4 min read

closeup photo of 100 US dollar banknotes

 

A goal refers to a desire which one aims at accomplishing. For one to attain these goals, one should be disciplined and committed. Financial goals refer to a commercial destination where one wishes to be in a certain period. It would be best if you wrote down those goals because this will act as a reminder that will be pushing you to work towards achieving them.

 

Importance of Setting Financial Goals

Setting the financial goals will move you out of the comfort zone. Financial goals are the direction of reaching your dreams. One can arrange short term or long term goals or economic security and control their expenditure. The short term goals include setting emergency funds. 

 

Emergency Funds Get Meant For Unpredicted Expenses

 

Long-Term Financial Goals involve saving enough money that gets majorly used after retiring. It is advisable to save 10-15% of the income. Retirement cost depends on the needs and expenses after retirement. One can also opt for optimized whole life insurance. This plan protects the family and still allows one to invest. The insurance provides many benefits, lasting protection, and investment without tax. Paying dividends helps to pay for whole life insurance.

 

Ways of Achieving Financial Goals Are:

Listing the Financial Goals

It would be best if you wrote down all your financial goals. Writing down helps you to actualize the goals, unlike when the idea is just in mind. A written plan becomes tangible island it is clearly defined and makes the mind to come up with ways of achieving it. Ensure the set goals are specific and measurable. Make use of the tools, which include books, mobile phones, websites, and internet programs, so that you can track the set goals.

 

Prioritize and Categorize the Goals

Define the goals which are essential and consider your financial situation. Do not forget that the long-term goals are more favorable compared to the short-term goals. Categorize the goals according to the timeframe. Classification will give you the direction of achieving the goals and choosing the best investment products. Prioritization will ensure that you come up with a better financial strategy.

 

Set the Target Dates and Deadlines

Setting deadlines makes you prepared to monitor the process. Fixing a target date impacts how one works towards achieving the goal. You will know the time it will take to accomplish the plan.

 

Approximate the Cost

You should estimate the amount of money that you will need. Adjust the cost, so that in case of inflation in the coming years, you will be on a safer side. Figure out the value of your target.

 

Amount to Save

After setting the value of the goal, it is easier to know the amount that is needed for you to invest. You can begin by contributing little and increase the same with time. Observe the rate of your income and calculate the amount to save towards the financial goal.

 

Make a Budget of the Savings

Ensure you have a record of the savings and put them in your budget, as this will bring a financial plan to become a reality. You should review the policy regularly and adjust the goals if need be. You can also set the new goals as you reflect on them.



The Bottom Line

 

In conclusion, it is good to set financial goals then come up with a business plan that will help you realize the financial goals. To achieve financial goals, you should be focused, organized, and determined. To achieve financial goals, know what you want, prioritize them, estimate the cost of each target, and how you are going to make the saving plan easy for you. 

 

Lindsey Patterson

Assertive vs. Rude, What's the Difference?

3 min read

people sitting on chair in front of table while holding pens during daytime

Many people suffer from communication problems because they fear being assertive with others for excessive worry about being perceived as rude.

 

So, What is the Difference Between Being Assertive and Rude?

 

Being assertive is being clear and unapologetic about what you want or need in any kind of situation. And shy, bashful, introverted people, whether they personally emulate it or not, know that assertive people generally get much more out of life.

 

They get the dates from the girl, they approach the boss for a raise, and in sales they are not afraid to ask the customer to buy. Always being closed is the mantra of salesmen, and essentially, assertive people are most often closing in one way or another.

 

However, as much as assertiveness is a trait to be admired, it's far different than rudeness. When assertiveness crosses the border into rudeness, most of it's because the aggressor only cares for his own opinion, not for the opinion of others.

 

When you are assertive that doesn't mean that you don't respect the other persons feelings, thoughts and beliefs.

 

Also, being assertive is being practical. The late President Kennedy was very assertive in many areas of politics and world affairs. When he addressed the U.S. (and Soviet Premier Khrushchev on the Cuban Missile Crisis, there was no doubting his resolve.

 

Yet when Kennedy came up for election against vice president Richard Nixon, one of his abilities was to assess smaller objectives against greater issues. Kennedy wanted to get elected,

 

So, when he was nominated by the Democrats at the 1960 Democratic Convention on the first ballot, JFK choses Lyndon Johnson as his running mate even though the two had open animosity for one another.

 

However, Kennedy was more concerned with winning the election, and Johnson's deep support in the South meant more to him than their mutual animosity.

 

Many assertive people can learn a lot about finding the fine balance between being assertive and caring for their opponent’s feelings by going through helpful negotiations training.

 

Similarly, many people who are shy and introverted can learn a lot about how being clear and forthcoming about their objectives is appreciated in business negotiations. And pretty much everything in life is a negotiation of some kind.

 

Another key tactic for assertive people to learn, and it is why being assertive sometimes gets a bad name, is that assertive people sometimes do not recognize the right time and place to negotiate.

 

For example, if a person feels they deserve a raise and they have half a dozen points listed on paper why should they get that raise including how they have brought a certain amount of income to the company in the last 6 months or year because of sales or new clients. That's a great start.

 

What isn't a great start is hitting the boss for a raise at the company picnic, or an awards dinner where the boss is being named philanthropist of the year.

 

Timing and Circumstances Are As Important As Being Assertive

 

Also, politeness counts. Being assertive, whether in a job interview, or a sales presentation must be tempered with politeness and respect if you wish to be an effective communicator. Otherwise, it easily comes off as rudeness. 

Lindsey Patterson

Tips to Keep Increase and Maintain Your Sales

4 min read

person typing on MacBook Pro on brown wooden table during daytime photo

Even the best businesses fall into a rut, finding that their accumulation of new customers is reaching a standstill. While this is bound to happen, there's no rule that says you have to accept this as the new status quo. In fact, there are things you can do to attract new consumers and to renew interest in past customers.

 

Re-Examine Your Approach

Before we go any further, it might be wise to take a fresh look at your marketing approach to determine if it's working for you. If you're not offering a solution to a unique problem, that may have something to do with your slump in sales. It's not enough for your customers to want your product. You have to convince them that they need their product and the best way to do that is by advertising how your product or service solves a specific problem. 

 

And from an employee standpoint, you may want to hire a motivational keynote speaker to aid your employees on how they can be successful selling their product. 

 

Connect With Your Customer Base

If you've succeeded in business for any length of time, you know the importance of social media in marketing. Both consumers and businesses turn to these platforms, because it provides a way to bond. Consumers are looking for a more personalized experience with their favorite businesses, so the most successful companies are those that engage in the practice of customer loyalty clienteling. By providing a more personalized experience for each consumer, your customers will feel valued and that will encourage them to keep returning. Quality of service is just as important as the quality of your products.

 

Create a Buzz

Years ago, this meant spending money on advertising gimmicks meant to draw in local customers. Today, this can be done for free or for just a few bucks, while enabling you to reach consumers from around the globe. You can use social media to generate a buzz by sharing original content that appeals to users. If you can make an emotional connection, perhaps by relating your business or product to a heartwarming story, more people are likely to share that post. You can also pay for advertising on social media sites, which can generate web traffic to your site in a similar way.

 

Exploit a "National" Day

It's difficult to find a day that isn't celebrated for something, whether it's to raise awareness for a social issue (National Love Your Red Hair Day) or to celebrate a favorite food (National Pizza Day). You can use these as an excuse to host a special sale or giveaway, capitalizing on the day by relating it to your business. For example, supply free pizza slices to your customers on National Pizza Day. People love to celebrate, so this is a great way to generate a big crowd and boost sales.

 

Move Your Products Outdoors

The sidewalk sale gained popularity for a reason. People gathering in large crowds are both noticeable and intriguing. By moving your products out into your parking lot and maybe inviting a local radio station to broadcast the event, people driving by will be interested to learn more about the action. You'll gain visitors who were just driving by and those listening to the bustle on the radio broadcast. Just make sure to check the weather forecast, when planning your outdoor event.

 

Remember to be Social 

If you get on social media solely to push your products, you'll likely chase away users instead of attracting new consumers. People no longer go in for the hard sell. They want to feel like business owners have an interest in them and they want to see that businesses are interested in social issues. By engaging with others and replying to comments, you'll earn a better reputation and more users are likely to visit your page.

 

Conclusion 

Pulling your business out of a slump requires a revitalized marketing campaign that seeks to connect with local consumers and compete in the online global marketplace. By engaging in traditional advertising ploys and connecting socially with online users, you can broaden your sphere of influence. While you may not see a change overnight, your persistence will pay off.



Lindsey Patterson

The Benefits of Cybersecurity to Businesses

3 min read

teal LED panel

When the word cybersecurity comes to mind, all one can think of is hackers. But what is cybersecurity? Cybersecurity is most discussed in a negative light; in terms of data breaches and laws against it. The benefits of cybersecurity to businesses is hardly ever mentioned. Effective cybersecurity systems make it possible for companies to launch new products, leading to better profit margins and growth.

 

Companies must have effective cybersecurity measures even as hackers get smarter and device new ways of compromising business systems. In this blog, we share some of the benefits of cybersecurity to small businesses.

 

Predict Cyber Threats

One of the critical functions of a sound cybersecurity system is detecting threats to the system in advance. The system should alert the cybersecurity officer when cybercriminals are targeting certain documents. A cybersecurity officer should also separate sensitive personal data belonging to staff and customers from non-sensitive information just in case they are compromised.

 

Block Cyber Threats

An efficient cybersecurity service will automatically block any threats to the system even before they advance further. Attackers are constantly finding new ways to commit fraud using business emails. There have been instances where clients received fake emails that appeared as legit emails. These emails from ‘senior staff members’ such as CEOs target finance officers who are often instructed to wire money to dubious accounts belonging to hackers. In 2018, the FBI released a public alert to caution businesses on the lookout for these attackers who had already swindled over 78,000 businesses and made it away with over $12 billion. These attackers make slight twitches in emails to create spoof email accounts that are almost identical to real emails. If a company has an efficient email filtering system, they will easily detect these fraudsters and prevent irredeemable losses.

 

Detect and Respond to Cyber Threats

Having a system that can predict cyber-attacks is great. However, these systems are human-made, and despite how great your systems can be, mishaps do happen, and attackers take advantage of these mishaps to attack networks. It is important to have a system that takes the next step to respond to these attacks by monitoring traffic.

 

Cybersecurity Services Save Money

A data breach will cost you huge amounts of money if it is successful besides losing hundreds or thousands of dollars. You will have to spend thousands tracking the money and, in most cases, might not recover it as cybercriminals are very smart when it comes to covering their tracks. You will spend money hiring lawyers, auditing, explaining and compensating victims, and much more. Investing in a cybersecurity service will cost you a tiny fraction of the money you could potentially lose if compromised by attackers. An effective cybersecurity system will save all the trouble and a lot of money.

 

A Consolidated Solution

A comprehensive security system will protect the network from a wide range of issues. It should be able to support your IT team by protecting from spam, viruses, wireless security, and filtration. A great security system will empower your team to confidently handle any attacks without fear that the system might go down any minute.

 

Final Words

 

Any business that operates on a network, which is pretty much every business today, needs an effective cybersecurity system. Attackers are working tirelessly to steal information and, more importantly, money from businesses. It is important to protect your business as a cybersecurity breach can cost you money and your reputation.