Avoiding to exchange personal data online is almost unavoidable.
When we visit a website, make a purchase, book a hotel room, login to our email client, we share important pieces of information leaving digital traces that can be used to get our identity.
Some of us pay little or no attention at all to the data we exchange online.
A few basic precautions can help us keep our identity and details safe while we surf the web. And even if it’s impossible to be 100% safe, we can certainly limit the risks.
Passwords – use long and complex passwords. They should include a combination of upper, lower case alphabets, numbers, special characters. Never use names, birth dates or phone numbers. It would be advisable to use different passwords for each platform you’re using, and change them every six months (especially for banks, credit cards, and email accounts).
A double factor authentication is an excellent solution to use whenever possible. It will require entering the password and another form of authentication too (for example an additional code sent to your smartphone or your email). It will make things harder for hackers.
Public wi-fi – when using a public wi-fi (airports, hotels, restaurants, etc..) it would be much better to avoid entering your credit cards details, passwords or sensitive data. Most of the public wi-fi connections are not secure, and hackers can use specific software to connect to your web traffic, detecting your data (including passwords, credit cards or bank details..). If you absolutely need to access your bank account while away from home, try to use, whenever possible, your smartphone internet connection.
Don’t forget to protect your wi-fi connection at home, modifying the password given by the provider.
Update technology – always upgrade to the most recent operating system version your devices so that security measures are always up to date.
Use the latest antivirus software. It’s critical to protect your PC from viruses and malware that aim to invade our privacy and steal our data.
Let’s use antivirus software provided by well-known and reliable companies. Pay attention to “fake” antivirus applications that send you false notifications informing that your PC safety has been compromised. Never follow their links.
Social Networks – pay attention to what you share and who you share with..
Only accept friendship requests from people you trust. Delete connections you don’t know or trust. Don’t show your sensitive data (address, telephone number, etc.). Check your privacy settings regularly.
Inbox emails – Pay attention to the links and attachments included in the emails you receive, even if the sender is someone you know. Our friend’s account might have been infected, sending out infected messages to all his contacts.
Secure websites – when we make transactions or shop online, let’s do it on secure websites. We can recognize them by their URL. At the beginning, you’ll read HTTPS. It means the website is using an SSL system, a security protocol that protects the integrity and confidentiality of data between the user’s computer and the site.
If we follow these basic guidelines and using common sense, we can do a lot to protect our privacy and identity online.
We won’t be 100% safe, but we can drastically reduce the risk to be targeted by hackers.READ MORE
If you have been thinking about expanding your business internationally, we would like to share some important thoughts and observations to ensure a successful business internationalization.
Considering all of these aspects thoroughly will help you create a successful strategy and see tangible results.
As always, our firm is at your disposal for further inquire about this matter. Contact us.
Going international with your company is always a great business opportunity.
To avoid any mistake before even starting, we would recommend paying particular attention to some delicate initial steps.
It is crucial to avoid:
1. Not Having a Strategic Plan
As in any other field, improvising a business internationalization will not end up being a winning strategy.
It is essential to set specific goals and to envision a strategic planning as detailed as possible, which takes into consideration all of the possible scenarios. Evaluating risks and benefits is the only way to put in place a process in that can actually give tangible results.
2. Not Estimating a Proper Budget
Enthusiasm and motivation are vital elements, but a realistic evaluation of all of your resources (material, financial and human) is just as necessary to support, implement and manage such complex projects.
3. Not Doing Appropriate Market Research
Your products or services might be of the best possible quality, but it is pointless to only rely on that. A successful company internationalization depends on lots of other variables. Thus, some prior market research is vital, to say the least.
You may also enquire for a consultant’s support to help you analyze your countries of interest.
Investigate what your international customers’ needs are and be ready to adapt your product/service for your new buyers, if necessary.
Do not expect your potential clients to adjust to what you and your company have to offer: indeed, it will have to be exactly the opposite.
4. Not Understanding Who Your Local Distributors Are
Local distributors with whom you intend to collaborate are of primary importance.
Get to know them in person whenever the chance arises and analyze their business thoroughly as well. Including the other products they are selling: some of their brands might be your direct competitors.
Spend the necessary time evaluating this matter and make sure your contract includes a termination clause. Just in case things play out differently.
5. Not Deepening the Cultural Aspect
Running a business abroad will highly unlikely turn out to be same as your home country. Besides all the legal and fiscal aspects, take into consideration the cultural one as well.
People who will decide to buy or not from you will base their decision on how good (or bad) your first impression has been for them: from how appealing your initial communication is and how professionally you conduct a negotiation to how efficient your shipment and after-sale services are.
Should they find themselves in the position of having to choose between you and another brand, they will never buy from someone whose company’s did not serve them in the most effective way.
Make sure all of your employees and collaborators possesses the right communication skills, education, and cultural awareness to interact properly with your prospect or clients.
6. Not Considering Your Online Presence Localization
A mere translation of your website and social accounts into your target language will not be enough. Needless to say: avoid using machine translators.
That is not it though. It is necessary to localize your website content by utilizing that cultural awareness we have just mentioned.
Some methodology and processes might differ considerably in your target market. A popular payment method in your home country might not be so well-known abroad.
Negotiations and administrative requirements may follow different procedures.
Therefore, it is essential to rely on external and experienced staff who can deal with these issues.
These are some of the most common mistakes we recommend avoiding for a successful company internationalization.
Most importantly: enquiring industry experts is the most effective way to see tangible results over time.
As always, our firm is at your complete disposal, just get in touch.READ MORE