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Why Cybercriminals Love Small Businesses and How SMBs can Stay Safe

May 22nd, 2019 by admin

Small and midsized businesses (SMBs) are far more susceptible to cyber attacks than larger corporations. Why? Often small and midsized businesses fail to focus on issues like cybersecurity because they are just starting out and may not realize the critical importance of having proper business security. Lack of knowledge, having the wrong software, and weak security infrastructure is what leads many businesses under. In fact, over 60% of small companies either go bankrupt or fail within 6 months of a severe cyber attack. It is the leading cause of failure, but this is an issue that can be avoided entirely. We are going to go over ways SMBs can keep themselves and their businesses safe from cybercriminals.

If you own a business in the U.S., you will be targeted by hackers at some point. Companies in the United States have the greatest risk of attack than any other country. According to this infographic from webfx.com, 71% of cyber attacks are aimed at businesses with fewer than 100 employees, this means that majority of hackers are focusing more on smaller companies and organizations. So, why aren't SMBs more vigilant when it comes to protecting themselves? Simple answer, lack of awareness. In the beginning stages of a business, there are so many things to worry about that it is easy to put security at the bottom of the priority list when it should be at the top. Outdated security systems, lack of employee training, having zero contingency plans, and a proper security solution tailored for your specific business are all significant factors that can lead a small business down the rabbit hole of vulnerability.

Protecting your business from hackers should be the foremost priority for SMBs. Luckily in recent times, it has become much easier to equip your business with a viable and appropriate security solution that doesn't have to break the bank. Here are a few ways to stay protected and prevent attacks.

  • Installing good anti-malware and firewall software. Even the government, more specifically, the FCC recommends that SMBs have sufficient firewall software that is regularly updated and monitored as it is a highly effective barrier for your data, servers, and networks. Anti-malware on all devices and systems protects your business from being infected by corrupted files and other malware attempts. Phishing, a pervasive source for malware, lures users to open and install files from emails. Anti-malware software will protect unsuspecting users from potentially infecting their devices and the entire network.
  • Training employees on security awareness. Educating your entire staff on how to identify common threats and practicing proactive measures may be the highest line of defense against cyber crimes. In fact, the majority of network and server breaches and attacks are caused merely by human errors.
  • Enforcing good password practices for your team, such as creating complex passwords and replacing them every 2-3 months can help strengthen overall security.
  • Regularly backing up data. No matter how many precautions you take attacks can still happen, so it is critically important to back up your systems and data regularly. Utilizing cloud storage for backups gives you the ability to access and restore your data quick and easy, after an attack or server wipeout.
  • Having a professionally managed security infrastructure that will grow with your business. As your business expands, you will need a cybersecurity solution that will provide consistent monitoring and protection to your systems 24/7. This may be a costlier approach, but as your business grows, it may be something to consider to give you peace of mind.

Posted in: cyber security

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