Think about how many times you have gone online this past week. What did you do while online? Check your email? Track your finances? Share pictures? Download videos? We can probably all agree that the internet today has become an invaluable resource in both our personal and professional lives. We have access to more information than ever. However, this added accessibility brings a great deal of risk and added responsibility, especially for small businesses.
Cyber crime continues to be very costly for organizations and is a problem that is not going away anytime soon. Damages related to cybercrime are projected to reach $6 trillion annual by 2020. Not to mention, almost half of all cyberattacks are directed at small businesses, according to data compiled by SCORE.
Attacks on SMBs are real, on the rise, and can pack a devastating blow. Here are some of the supporting facts:
- Only 14 percent of small businesses rate their ability to mitigate cyber risks, vulnerabilities, and attacks as highly effective.
- 60 percent of small companies go out of business within six months of a cyberattack.
- Small businesses were affected by 113,000 incidents of macro malware in 2017
- 39% of the 269 billion emails sent and received in 2017 were spam messages
- Small businesses experienced 66,000 online banking malware attacks in 2017
- Small businesses were affected by 54,000 ransomware incidents in 2017
- The average amount demanded during a ransomware attack is $1,077 – but the average cost to businesses is $133,000 (when accounting for downtime, lost opportunities and recovery costs)
Cyber threats are real. They don’t just happen to someone else, they can happen to you.
As a business owner, it is crucial that you are more aware of growing threats and that you are armed with the tools necessary to protect yourself, your family, your business and our national security.
We’ve put together a few cybersecurity tips for you:
- Stop: Before you use the internet, take time to understand the risks and learn how to spot potential problems.
- Think: Take a moment to be certain the path ahead is clear. Watch for warning signs and consider how your actions online could impact your safety, or your family’s safety.
- Connect: Enjoy the internet with greater confidence knowing you’ve taken the right steps to safeguard yourself and your computer.
Protect yourself and help keep the web a safer place for everyone.
- Set Strong Passwords. Use passwords with eight or more characters and a combination of numbers, letters and symbols. Don’t share your passwords with anyone.
- Install Updates. Keep your operating system, browser and other critical software optimized by installing updates.
- Use Privacy Settings. Limit the amount of personal information you share online and use privacy settings to avoid sharing information widely.
With cyber threats rising each day, inside and outside the networks of businesses, across all industries, it is crucial to be more aware of exposure to hacking attempts and ransomware and know what to do to protect your business.