Imagine starting a cannabis business without IT support. Without the right technology in place, you can’t process orders, service customers, or keep your facilities secure. If you aren’t highly functional, your prospects will notice, and take their business elsewhere.
Having the proper IT experts in place will keep every aspect of your business secure and operating well. But how do you ensure you’ve found the right IT expert to handle the job? Before you place your trust in an IT company, take the time to research prospects thoroughly. If an IT company doesn’t place internal compliance and security at the top of their lists, they can ultimately put you at greater risk too. Cybercriminals prey on finding weaknesses. A weak IT company can be a profitable backdoor.
Still, if you’re not a technology expert, how do you know if your IT prospect is taking the necessary precautions to keep you safe? Ask these questions to see how serious they are about compliance and security.
What’s your approach to compliance?
Today’s cannabis industry is changing rapidly. Remaining compliant takes continual research and education to ensure you meet federal, state, and local regulations. Standard IT companies may not understand all that’s involved in complying with cannabis laws. You can find out how well versed an IT company is by diving deep into its internal approach to compliance. Do they look at compliance as a yearly event, or is it a part of their culture, something they address as a part of ongoing effort?
Do you have a team dedicated to security and compliance?
Cybercriminals don’t wait for appropriate times to target your business. Because they change their approaches consistently, it’s your job to be functional and prepared for whatever comes your way. An IT company well versed in compliance takes continuing education to stay on top of threats as they materialize, and changes to the law as they happen in real-time. If an IT company has a dedicated staff to understand these changes, their entire structure will be more prepared to protect their clientele.
Who is responsible for the data within your business?
As business owners, we have a lot on our plates. It’s easy to hire a company, hand over a portion of our daily tasks, and assume everything is under control. It’s only later that you realize your mistake. Start with the end in mind. See the big picture before you sign on the dotted line. What will an IT company be in charge of? How deep will protection and oversight run? Will it fully cover third-party platforms you use within your business? How strong is your defense through all aspects of your business?
What precautions are used to protect against breaches and leaks?
An IT company helps secure all of your data, ensuring it’s safe from criminal activity. They may be in charge of backup copies, guaranteeing compliance of third-party platforms, and disaster recovery plans if something goes wrong. IT support can cover a full array of services – do you know what will provide you with complete protection? Too often, cannabis business owners buy into a small package and think they’re covered, only to realize too late that there were gaping holes that left them vulnerable.
You don’t know what you don’t know. You might not be fully protected if you don’t know how to ask the question.
The further you dig into what support means, the more you can assess the services of working with an IT team. This should be about complete protection for every aspect of your business now, and as you grow.
For IT Strategy, Security and Compliance, or Help Desk Services, reach out to us at Cannabis Technology Partners 360-450-4759.