Cyber threats aren’t just a cause for concern for big business corporations and governments across the world. Small businesses can be as much of a target as large corporations and recent research suggests that around 22% of all small businesses have been the targets of cyberattacks and security breaches, with 11% of these occurring over the course of the last 12 months.
As a business, it is vital to do as much as you can to protect your business from cyberattacks and threats, but the truth is that some business owners simply don’t know how best to do this. With that in mind, let’s take a look at a quick and easy guide to understanding the basics of cyber security for your business.
How Is My Business At Risk?
Cyberattacks can put your finances, data, security and IT equipment at risk. Should a hacker gain access to your network, they may be able to do a lot of damage with what they discover. This can include:
- Client lists
- Business or customer credit card information
- Your business banking details
- Your pricing structure
- Protected product designs
- Plans for expansion
- Your manufacturing processes
These attacks not only put your business at risk. Hackers can use their newly acquired access to your network as a way into the networks of other businesses who you may be connected with. As well as this, they also have access to client’s confidential information.
What Is The Impact Of A Cyber Attack?
Falling victim to a cyber attack can have drastic impacts on your business. These can include:
- Financial loss from the theft of your banking information
- Financial loss from business disruption
- High costs with getting rid of threats from your network
- Reputational damage if your customer or client information is compromised
How To Protect Your Business From Cyber Security Threats
Train Your Employees
Human error is the most common way in which businesses can fall victim to cyber attacks. Around 43% of all data loss comes from internal employees who give cybercriminals access to your business data and this is largely down to a lack of education. There are many ways in which employees can grant access to cyber criminals, whether it be misplacing a work device or having unsecure login details.
One of the most common ways is opening fraudulent emails or messages. You can protect your business from human error by investing in cyber security training for employees, educating them on the different types of cyber attack and what they should do if they spot something unusual.
Perform Regular Risk Assessments
You should regularly evaluate potential risks that may compromise the security of your business’ networks, information and systems. Identifying and analysing these possible threats can help you to create a plan of action and rid any gaps in your security. As part of your risk assessment, you should examine exactly how and where your data is stored and who has access to it within your business.
Then, you can identify who may potentially want to access the data and how they could achieve this. Determine the risk levels of these possible events and how, should they be successful, this will impact your business. Once you’ve identified any potential risks, use this information to develop and refine your security strategy.
Consider Enlisting The Help Of A Cyber Security Company
For many businesses, looking after cybersecurity is out of their remit of skills and, as a result, this is where most businesses usually fall victim to attacks. If your business deals with highly confidential information and you simply can’t keep up with cyber security maintenance, then you should consider enlisting the help of a dedicated security company.
Cyber security companies focus on a range of cyber security services, such as running independent tests and reviews, providing extra support if you or your employees are having trouble with things such as backing up files and ensure that you have the best security measures in place to protect your business from an attack.