Protecting your company against a cyber attack is a complex undertaking, with the need to understand the risks specific to your industry as well as the size of your operations.
A recent review of more than 100,000 incidents revealed that 60 percent of cyber attacks are directed at small businesses, according to the recent Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. That number coincides with estimates that small businesses made up 40 to 50 percent of targets.
However, the ramifications of attacks against small businesses can be much more significant, with many unable to sustain their operations in the wake of an incident. According to the U.S. National Cyber Security Alliance, 60 percent of small companies were unable to remain in business six months after a cyber attack.
The cost of recovering from an attack can be extensive. The Ponemon Institute put the figure at $690,000 for small businesses to clean up their operations in the wake of an attack. For mid-sized companies, the price tag averages over $1 million.
Check these 3 essential methods of cyber protection
Beware of ransomware. According to the FBI, ransomware is the most common cyber security risk facing small businesses, with more than 4,000 U.S. businesses getting infected daily. This type of attack involves the criminal taking over files on networks by encrypting them — and then demanding ransom to get the company operating again. It’s important to check with a security consultant to determine your risks and implement an effective tool against such attacks. You can also regularly back up your data to ensure that you are not at the mercy of attackers.
Train employees in proper security measures. Vulnerabilities are often caused by poor security habits in the workplace. With proper training on how to maintain security protocol with computer systems, passwords, data center equipment, email (detecting suspicious emails that could contain malware), and other systems, your team can help minimize the most preventable attacks.
Invest in secure systems. In addition to taking measures to avoid issues caused by employee negligence, it’s also critical to invest in systems that are more secure, including those from tech suppliers. Take the time to review the systems and ask questions about the level of security.