Small Medium-Sized Business
From newsworthy data breaches to reports of ransomware payments, cybersecurity threats for businesses are on the rise. But the myth that data breaches only affect large companies is just that—a myth. Sixty-one percent of data breaches happen to companies with fewer than 1,000 employees.
Hackers, whether they’re external or internal actors, steal money and information and disrupt operations. Data breaches, hacks, and ransomware can have devastating effects on small and medium-sized businesses, often causing loss of reputation, clients, and revenue that ultimately force the company to close.
As computer networks and infrastructures become increasingly complex and more vulnerable to physical and internet-based attacks, cybercrime becomes harder to police—making prevention the best way to stop a cyberattack.
Cybersecurity is the overall protection of computer networks and data from theft and damage. Cybersecurity can be broken down into three components: technical security, usability, and user training and awareness.
Technical security is all about protecting your network from intruders. Technical security uses tools such as next-generation firewalls and antivirus software to limit unauthorized access to your network, as well as detect and remove malware.
Usability refers to the functionality of your company’s cybersecurity policy. Your cybersecurity policy should align with business needs and allow employees to easily access the information they need.
User training and awareness will familiarize your employees with your company’s cybersecurity policy. Ongoing cybersecurity training and awareness will provide employees with general knowledge of common security concerns and empower them to make smart decisions about company data.
WHY SHOULD MY BUSINESS
WORRY ABOUT CYBERSECURITY?
The financial impact of a data breach can cripple your company’s ability to operate. Data loss could lead to extended downtimes during which clients aren’t being served and may lose trust in your business. Additionally, your company could face steep fines depending on your industry’s compliance requirements.
Cybersecurity isn’t just about protecting your company’s data—it’s also about protecting your business’s interests and other assets such as cash, trade secrets, intellectual property, and your reputation. Even though 25 percent of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are likely to experience a data breach, only two percent of SMB owners consider cybersecurity a top concern.
SMBs often believe that because they have fewer assets, they’re less likely to be targeted by cybercriminals. However, SMBs are easy targets because they have fewer resources—and less protection—than large corporations.
HOW DO CYBERCRIMINALS ACCESS
MY COMPANY’S DATA?
Cybercriminals use a variety of methods, such as hacking and social engineering, to gain access to your network.
More than 60 percent of data breaches use hacking as a means of accessing business data. Of those hacking-related breaches, 81 percent used stolen or weak passwords to gain access to company networks.
Another 43 percent of data breaches use social engineering tactics to steal data. Social engineering uses manipulation to trick employees into performing unsafe actions or giving up confidential information. Phishing, the most common type of social engineering scheme, uses deceptive emails to obtain credit card numbers and passwords, or deploy viruses into your network. Phishing methods often capitalize on an employee’s position within the company and rely on those who aren’t paying close attention to click suspicious links or download malicious attachments. In short, any message you receive from a sender you don’t recognize could be the source of a cyberattack.
Cybercriminals also use malware to exploit network vulnerabilities. More than half of all data breaches feature malware attacks. Ransomware is one of the most common types of malware—it gives hackers the ability to encrypt your company’s data in exchange for a ransom. The ransomware industry grows by 350 percent each year, and cost businesses more than $5 billion in 2017.
WHAT ARE THE ODDS MY BUSINESS WILL
EXPERIENCE A DATA BREACH?
Your business’s odds of experiencing a data breach are one in four.
Nearly half of all cyberattacks target small and medium-sized businesses. SMBs are attractive targets for cybercriminals because they have valuable data, are more likely to pay ransoms, and are less likely to have adequate cybersecurity protocols.
The average total cost of a data breach is $3.6 million.
Data breaches and ransomware attacks mainly affect businesses with fewer than 1,000 employees—businesses that can’t afford to lose their data.
HOW DOES MY IT PROVIDER
PROTECT MY NETWORK?
No one company can fulfill all your business’s cybersecurity needs, but your managed IT services provider can help you build a foundation for a strong cybersecurity policy.
Your IT outsourcing provider will secure your network and advise your company’s C-suite of best security practices. Your IT provider can also help your company create and implement an employee cybersecurity training and awareness program.
Your IT provider will regularly monitor your network for threats and maintain compliance standards. They may also implement standard policies such as multiple security technology and identity management.
How prevalent are cyberattacks for small and medium-sized businesses?
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