Building a small business is hard work. You invested blood, sweat, and tears in starting your business and in supporting your staff and clients.
You’re willing to take steps to protect it, including online.
Small business cybersecurity is not as frightening as it may seem. We will describe some of the threats you may face in this article and lay out some simple actions any small business owner could take to help improve their security online.
What is cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting computers, servers, mobile devices, electronic systems, networks, and data from digital attacks, theft, and damage. Because there are more cyberthreats than ever before and because a successful attack could have catastrophic results, cybersecurity is more crucial than ever in today’s digital age.
Due to their often lack of resources and knowledge compared to larger companies, small businesses are particularly exposed to cyber threats. Small businesses are the target of 43% of all cyberattacks, and 60% of small businesses that experience a cyberattack go out of business within six months, according to the National Cyber Security Alliance. In addition, a National Small Business Association survey discovered that a small business must spend $20,752 on average to defend against a cyberattack. This price may include things like the expense of recovering from the assault, lost revenue, and reputational harm to the business.
There are many different types of cyber threats, including viruses, worms, ransomware, phishing attacks, and malware. Hackers, nation-states, as well as internal employees or contractors, are just a few of the potential sources of these dangers.
Ways to protect your small business
There are a variety of different ways cyber threats present themselves and sometimes are very difficult to identify. However, improving your company’s cyber safety can be simple and there are small, manageable steps you can take!
- One of the greatest ways to prevent internet attacks is to use strong passwords and update them periodically. Use different passwords for each account as well because doing so makes it far more difficult for hackers to access several accounts. Using two-factor authentication, which requires a code to be sent to a phone or an authentication app, to access a website, can add an additional layer of security.
- Making sure that all software and systems are maintained up to date with the most recent security patches and updates is another crucial part of cybersecurity. Installing these updates can assist in reducing the likelihood that cyberattacks will be successful because they frequently correct vulnerabilities that have been identified.
- Phishing attacks must also be avoided since they attempt to trick individuals into providing personal information or downloading malicious malware onto their devices. These attacks could appear as bogus emails, texts, or websites that appear to be from reputable sources. Protecting oneself from phishing attacks requires being cautious when inputting personal information online or clicking on links, as well as double-checking the validity of any contact that seems shady.
- Small organizations should have thorough cybersecurity plans in place to safeguard their networks and systems, in addition to taking measures to protect specific devices and accounts. Firewalls, intrusion detection and prevention systems, and routine security audits are a few examples of what this can encompass.
- Last but not least, it’s crucial for small businesses to regularly back up their data because doing so can help prevent data loss in the case of a cyberattack or other tragedy. In addition to creating actual copies on external hard drives or other storage devices, this can also involve storing data in the cloud.
In conclusion, cybersecurity is a crucial component of our digital life, and small businesses should take extra precautions to safeguard themselves. Small businesses may help protect themselves and their customers from the increasing number of cyber threats by using strong passwords, keeping software and systems up to date, being alert of phishing attacks, and putting thorough cybersecurity policies into place. The repercussions of a successful attack can be disastrous, with the possibility of large monetary losses and long-term harm to the company’s reputation. Your business can lessen their chance of being a target of a cyber attack by prioritizing cybersecurity and remaining watchful.