When companies like Target, Equifax and Yahoo with huge IT budgets experience cybersecurity breaches, no one is safe. These companies have dozens of IT staff dedicated to fending off cyber attacks. Did you know, cybercrime now outnumbers all other forms of organized crime?
Cybercriminals are Targeting Small Business
As larger enterprises invest further to strengthen their cybersecurity defenses, cybercriminals are shifting their focus to small businesses. Attacks of smaller companies are growing with over 43% of all attacks targeting small business. Worse yet, over 60% of these companies go out of business within one year after experiencing a breach.
Cybercriminals target small businesses because they’re easier to breach. They thrive on businesses using obsolete technology. They seek a variety of information, from documents and intellectual property, to credit card and financial information. They’ll also mine information about your staff and customers.
According to a 2017 Ponemon study, the global average total cost of a data breach is U.S. $3.62 million. New regulations around handling customer data also puts small business at risk of large fines if they fail to protect it properly. These fines can significantly impact a small business even when no breach has occurred.
Build a Culture of Awareness
To combat this problem, small businesses need to create a culture of awareness around the topic of cybersecurity. Leading companies create compliance, responsibility and reward programs to foster the development of this culture.
They appoint cultural ambassadors to build awareness. These cultural ambassadors encourage employees to do things like change passwords on a regular basis. They ask co-workers to hold each other accountable for how they secure the company’s and their own data. And they reward employees for reporting phishing emails and other attempts to compromise the company’s security.
Leading companies also take the time to make sure everyone is updating their software. Out of date software is a leading vulnerability that is easily addressed. Most companies also take a few other precautionary measures like having backups and disaster recovery plans, firewalls, AV malware solutions and perhaps another component here or there.
Engage a Cybercrime Specialist
Although these efforts make a big impact, they are generally not enough to fend off determined cybercriminals. The good news is the support needed to combat cybercrime is not out of reach for smaller businesses. A new breed of companies, like Complete Interactive Technologies (CIT), has made a significant investment in cybersecurity technology and specialize in small business. They offer educated teams of professionals and can be identified through their cybersecurity certifications.
These companies leverage sophisticated next-generation cybersecurity solutions that include dark web monitoring, email filters with malware protection, staffed 24×7 security operations centers (SOC), password vaults, quarterly network vulnerability scans, DNS “dangerous website” blockers, phishing simulators, security awareness training to educate companies on what emails and web sites not to click on, and expanded AV malware protection.
The risk of not acting is huge and the solutions are manageable. There really is no good reason not to act to protect your small business. To learn more about how CIT can protect your business contact us and let’s talk.