The Importance of Cybersecurity For Small Business

PublisherSol Minion Developmenthttps: Cybersecurity small businesssecurity

Going into 2021, small businesses like yours are focusing on increasing their online presence, building an online sales platform (e-commerce), and maintaining communication with employees, vendors, and customers. The COVID-19 pandemic is behind much of this focus in the new year. Concern over the “pandemic economy” is the number one area of uncertainty for small businesses (source). That is driving companies to look to digital solutions or replacements for the ways they did business in the past. It is also presenting a growing threat -- cybersecurity.

Another cybersecurity consideration is the fact that businesses sent employees home to work in 2020. Many, if not most, of those employees, won’t return to the office full time. That extends the wall of security around their networks into the homes of their employees, opening up entirely new opportunities for hackers to get in.

So, what should you know about cybersecurity and your business going into 2021?

Thumbnail - Resource: Cybersecurity Checklist

Download Our Checklist

Start creating your cybersecurity strategy with our free checklist to evaluate your risk.

Thumbnail - Resource: Cybersecurity Checklist

Download Our Checklist

Start creating your cybersecurity strategy with our free checklist to evaluate your risk.

Types Of Cybersecurity Attacks and Breaches

You may be aware of some of the largest, most infamous cybersecurity attacks in recent years, including foreign attacks on our government, the Equifax hacking, and other breaches at companies like Adobe, LinkedIn, Yahoo, and eBay. There are attackers actively working all around the globe using bots and technology to find any vulnerabilities they can in networks and devices -- think thermostats and doorbells these days. Which “device” is most vulnerable? Humans. Your employees.

Here are a few types of cybersecurity attacks:

  • Social Engineering: Bad actors manipulate and trick your employees into giving information the hackers need to get into your network.
  • Malware: A virus that gets into your computers and networks and opens up your data to hackers.
  • Ransomware: A virus that takes over access to your data in exchange for a ransom payment to the hackers.
  • Denial-Of-Service: Bots and servers that shut down your server and network by flooding it with internet traffic.
  • Phishing: Emails that look like they come from your business or your vendors that trick employees into giving up secure information such as passwords and account access information.
  • Insider Threats: Employees who give access to hackers or sell your company information to them.
  • Technical Hacking: Using technical weapons to access your data, including code injections, password hacks, and network breaches.

The Impact Of A Cybersecurity Breach

A cybersecurity breach can be as minimal as being a minor annoyance and as severe as being the end of your business. If the breach is serious enough, the consequences could bleed into the owner’s or officers’ personal lives.

Here are the potential business impacts of a cybersecurity breach:

  • Loss of revenue
  • Loss of Intellectual Property (IP)
  • Legal actions against you and your business
  • Damaged reputation
  • Regulatory actions (GDPR)
  • All of the above

Protecting Your Small Business And Your Customers

Creating a cybersecurity plan to protect your business and your customers’ information begins with an assessment of your current security activities and training, as well as identifying vulnerabilities. There are three key areas for small businesses as they create these plans, including:

  • Cybersecurity: The technology side of locking down and protecting your data, IP, and networks.
  • Social Engineering: The human side of your cybersecurity plan involves training your team on best practices. implementing processes that keep your team informed, and having processes to handle any breaches that occur.
  • Budgeting: None of these protections happen without a financial commitment to cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity Consulting

The first step in creating your cybersecurity plan is an assessment. This is an involved process that analyzes your technology, your people, and your processes in order to implement the proper cybersecurity protections and identify points of vulnerability. An easy way to get started on your own is to download our cybersecurity checklist. Once you have completed this, contact us to do a thorough assessment of your business and make sure that protections are in place for your business and your customers’ data.

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