For hackers, size is just a number!
Cybersecurity is a global issue that demands a global approach. Over the past few years, cyber threats have become more sophisticated and more difficult to detect. In the first half of 2016 alone, there were 974 publicly disclosed data breaches which led to 554 million data records stolen. This should be a wake up call for all businesses, regardless of their size. A recent report from Symantec showed that 1 in 40 small businesses are at risk of a cyber attack.
It’s a well-known fact that SMBs have weak cybersecurity, and that’s precisely the reason why hackers see them as an easy target. Here are some of the potential reasons why these companies are attractive to hackers:
Inadequate security – One common mistake that most small business owners make is thinking they don’t have anything that hackers might want. This presumption couldn’t be more wrong, as cyber criminals don’t go for the volume but the value. Every company, either small or large, has sensitive information and valuable data waiting to be hacked. Moreover, having less financial power, a small business will have weaker security systems, making them easy targets..
Untrained employees – Protection is not just about having antivirus software installed and perform constant updates. It’s also about educating your employees to be responsible with the resources you provide them and informing them about the cyber threats that they are exposed to. Teaching your employees how to detect and respond to suspicious emails, links and dangerous websites, will increase your security level.
Small businesses need to prepare for Cyber Attacks
The rate of cyber-attacks will not decrease, at least not in the next few years. Small business owners should make sure they are using all the resources and best practices to keep their business safe. Here are a few tips that might help you:
- Firewalls and Anti-viruses
These security solutions are great if you want to improve your security within your company. However, what you should keep in mind is that no system is 100% safe. Even with strong firewalls and antivirus software, your employees could compromise the entire infrastructure with one simple click.
- Insurance coverage
Cyber insurance coverage can keep your business financially safe from data breaches, ransomware attacks. It might even replace systems that may be lost, stolen or destroyed. However, it doesn’t restore the lost information, which might be way more valuable than the physical systems themselves.
- Malicious insiders
Hackers are not the only ones that could damage your business. Employees can be even more dangerous, as they might have access to sensitive data or information, that could harm your business. Even though you have confidentiality agreements you could still have a rogue employee that could cause havic.
Choose the right security solution for your business
Once you understand why hackers would like to attack your business and what kind of cyber-attacks to expect, you need to know what you can do to protect your business. Here are some defence strategies that could keep cyber criminals away from your business:
- Enable a cybersecurity culture – Train your employees and make them understand why cybersecurity is vital. Inform them about the emerging cyber threats and also about how your business might be affected in case of a data breach happens.
- Establish a security management strategy – Every hacker has a strategy and so should you. Being one step ahead of cyber criminals and having a strong security plan and strategy, can be very helpful in case of a cyber-attack attempt.
- Get advice from an expert – Most of the times, professionals might get you out of trouble, especially if you are a small business and you don’t have your own IT department. Luckily there are plenty of cybersecurity tools that could make your business safer.
Bottom line, either you run a small business or a large one, you need to keep your eyes on the ball and ensure a high cybersecurity level using all the resources you have available. As long as you train your employees, enable a cybersecurity culture and ask professional guidance, you will have a great defense. Just remember, no system is 100% safe against a hacker, so we all need to continuously improve our cybersecurity level to have the most impact against a cybersecurity threat.
Looking forward to hearing your cybersecurity tips & tricks!
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