Here’s a question for the owners and managers of small businesses: How are you protecting your company from cyber-attacks and hacking?
You might think your business isn’t big or important enough to be a target, but unfortunately, the opposite is true. While headlines often focus on the large-scale breaches (Target, Equifax, and Marriott to name a few) small businesses are actually a prime target for hackers because of their size and relative lack of concern regarding cyber-attacks – and the data supports this.
In 2016, the Verizon Data Break Investigation Report found that 51% of all cyber-attacks were on small businesses. That number increased to 61% in 2017, and then 67% in 2018. The fallout from these hacks can be devastating to smaller entities, often because they lack the resources of larger companies. This includes the loss of assets, money, or even the entire business.
Bottom line, your small business is at a growing risk of a cyber-attack or data breach, so it’s important you take the steps to keep your information safe.
How To Protect Your Small Business From Cyber Attacks
You don’t have to be a cybersecurity expert to start protecting your business. Some of the basic actions you can take today include:
- Keeping all systems and browsers updated.
- Using long and strong passwords that include upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. You’ll also want to make sure to change ALL passwords when an employee leaves the company.
- Requiring all employees to add passcodes to phones, laptops, and tablets – especially if they use public WiFi.
- Shredding ALL documents that contain sensitive information.
- Installing two-factor authentication to any and all programs, software, email providers, etc. that you use (you will often be prompted by the service to do this).
- Utilizing anti-virus and anti-malware programs, such as C-Cleaner, BitLocker, Crash Plan.
- Updating your website from HTTP to HTTPS if not already done.
Consider Cyber Insurance
To mitigate the damages of cyber-attacks and data breaches, cyber liability insurance has emerged as a way to add another layer of protection to your company. Like most forms of insurance, cyber insurance can provide tremendous benefits and relief if you’ve been hit with an attack. These include:
- Covering the costs of stopping the breach.
- Replacing lost or damaged data.
- Covering legal fees and fines in case you face a lawsuit.
- Fixing vulnerabilities in your system.
If you’ve been hit with a cyber attack, or have questions about the legal process for protecting yourself, call the attorneys at Stanko, Senter & Mitchell today.