It's 2022 and cybercrime is the highest ever. Cyber attacks are becoming more sophisticated and no one is secure-from regular Internet users to multinational corporations and government agencies. It is always said that individuals need to practice better cybersecurity hygiene, and as an organization with valuable and risky information, large international companies and government agencies are ready to implement safe and up-to-date cybersecurity programs. It is expected to cost a lot of money. But what about small businesses?
SMEs may think that cybercriminals are likely to target large or enterprises due to the sheer volume of valuable data and resources. However, this is far from the case, as nearly 70% of SMEs are affected by cyberattacks, and without a proper cybersecurity plan, they are much more aware of the risks of these cyberattacks.
Many small business owners may believe that their business is so small that they will never ride the radar of cybercriminals. According to research, it actually seems to be the most vulnerable to attacks. We found that 43% of all cyberattacks targeted small businesses. Why is this?
Many SMEs lack proper security measures
SMEs typically do not have a real cybersecurity infrastructure in place. Implementing a cybersecurity infrastructure requires significant resources, large companies often allocate millions of dollars to security systems, and can hire qualified cybersecurity solution consultants. SMEs do not have the funds to build a suitable cybersecurity infrastructure.
There are few affordable IT security solutions for small businesses. Owners usually don't have enough resources to invest in cybersecurity, which also means they can't afford to hire a team of experts to set up, maintain, and monitor cybersecurity systems. A few small businesses with some form of security are much more likely to be using older systems or lacking the proper security protocols. The management and operation of these cybersecurity teams is also mostly taken over by a small team of inexperienced individuals.
Cybersecurity threats are not taken seriously In a survey of more than 2,000 small business owners conducted by
CNBC, only 2% ranked cyberattacks as the biggest problem. Small business owners do not believe they are being attacked and are not prepared for attacks from cybercriminals. But ironically, it's this idea that they undo. That's why they are so vulnerable.
Cybercriminals prefer to target small businesses because they know that their owners haven't taken too many security measures to protect themselves. Cybercriminals want personal information, and it's not just big companies that have it. Target data breaches in 2013 allow criminals to access targeted servers through credentials stolen from small third parties, and also show why hackers target small businesses.
Small Business Cyber Security Best Practices Don't Break Banks
Small Business Owners may find themselves powerless in the face of cyberattacks. In particular, all the new (and expensive) technologies recommended by today's enterprises. However, there are still steps that owners can take to protect their businesses that don't spend a fortune.
Business Risk Assessment
SMEs need a clear understanding of cybersecurity risks before making informed decisions to improve their cybersecurity attitudes. First Steps to Improving Cybersecurity: Cybersecurity risk assessments help owners identify and understand what poses a risk of attack and where maximum improvements can be made. It also helps businesses identify vulnerable locations and create action plans.
A thorough understanding of this risk can guide security strategies and process change selection and implementation, and justify security-related spending. Without understanding the risks, security decisions can be more harmful than profitable. Small business owners also need to be prepared for cyber attacks and other cyber emergencies. This is essential if the owner wants maximum protection for their business, employees, and customers in the event of an attack.
Backup of company data It is important to have a copy of all company data in the backup repository in case the organization is hacked and its data is deleted. Protect sensitive data and back up the rest on all machines on a regular basis. Important data includes word processing documents, electronic spreadsheets, databases, financial files, personnel files, accounts receivable / accounts payable files, and more.
companies can use a backup program that automatically copies files to storage. In the event of an attack, you can restore files from backup. We recommend that you choose a program that offers the possibility of scheduling or automating the backup process. That way, it's okay to remember it.
Keeping Up-to-date with Antivirus Software
Small Business Owners equip all business computers and devices with antivirus and antispyware software available from various vendors and update regularly need to do it. Antivirus software vendors regularly provide users with patches and updates to fix security issues, improve functionality, and mitigate ever-changing cybersecurity situations. Configuring all software to install updates automatically simplifies management and makes your system more secure. Not only should such software provide protection, but it should also provide technology that helps clean up and restore the computer to its pre-infection state as needed. Companies can also set up email spam filters that rule out potential threats and reduce the likelihood of phishing scams.
Multi-Factor Authentication requires you to provide multiple forms of ID before you can grant access to the information. Multi-factor authentication requires additional information such as biometrics and a security code sent to the phone to log in. Organizations need to invest in additional security measures that act as safety nets in case the weaknesses of one means of authentication affect them.
With more secure authentication technologies such as biometrics, users are not authenticated using not only passwords (transferable) but also unique passwords, which is often associated with passwords such as phishing, which accounts for 46% of cybercrime. It has been shown that the risk is reduced. Factors (fingerprints and facial recognition) and factors that the user must own (keycards and tokens).
SMEs can also ensure that hackers use multi-factor authentication by employees and third parties who process sensitive data, especially financial information, as a work strategy for entering the company through insiders and third parties. I can do it.
Educating Employees About Cyber Security
To keep your business safe, small business owners need to increase risk awareness and mitigation efforts within their organization. You need to make sure your employees are aware of cybersecurity threats and take precautions to protect yourself and your business. According to a survey, 43% of data breaches are due to internal employees maliciously or inadvertently granting cybercriminals access to corporate networks. Therefore, establishing basic employee security principles and policies is one of the most important tasks companies must face to protect themselves from cyberattacks. Employees need to be able to identify cybersecurity risks such as phishing emails, maintain good security hygiene, and protect sensitive corporate data.
To protect against internal threats, SMEs should invest in cybersecurity training for all employees. This is because in most cybersecurity attacks, employees are the first line of defense. With proper training, you can contribute to your organization's cybersecurity efforts in a variety of ways.
Protecting Corporate Assets with Cybersecurity Insurance
Data breaches can cost small businesses up to $ 50,000. This can be a big blow to small businesses that are already on a tight budget. Cyber security insurance helps cover the effects of cyber attacks and data breaches. Data leakage or loss, lost profits after business interruption, investigation costs, legal costs, etc.
Many insurance agencies also offer cyber training programs and resources.
Many small business owners are insured to reduce the risk of running their business, including workers' accident compensation for general liability, negligence and omissions. However, they often overlook the need for cyber insurance. In the event of a cyberattack or data breach, cyber insurance helps businesses recover their financial losses and pay for recovery procedures such as credit monitoring, notification to affected parties, statutory costs, and breach investigations.
Cyber criminals do not distinguish between large and small businesses-everyone's data is a free game. And the truth is that no matter how small a company looks, it can eventually be hacked, or at least compromised. Therefore, small business owners need to take important steps to protect their data and assets.
By understanding the risks and vulnerabilities faced, developing cost-effective and sustainable cybersecurity programs, raising employee awareness, and protecting corporate assets, small business owners can identify themselves. Positioning and better recovery from cyber attacks and security breaches.