There’s no doubt you’ve heard your peers who own and run small and medium-sized businesses say that they aren’t too worried about cyber and data security. Smaller companies are just not targets for these online criminals, right? Actually, this assumption has cost small and medium-sized organizations thousands of dollars. Everyone is at risk for a data breach – while you may think your business can fly under the radar, you should reconsider ASAP and beef up your security measures.
You may make the assumption that hackers don’t care about your company because you don’t make much money or because you don’t have customer records on file. However, there are many reasons why criminals may want to access your data, and it’s not always about stealing. While you may not have credit card numbers or medical records that thieves can grab, you do still have employment records and company information that hackers can share with your competitors. You can’t possibly know all the reasons why someone would want access to your data, so it is best to plan ahead knowing your data can be valuable to thieves for a number of reasons.
Another issue with many small businesses is that they often have one or two people handling their IT operations. That one IT person provides desktop and break/fix support while helping to manage vendors like Internet Service providers and phone providers, so their valuable time is often spent on those more obvious needs. Monitoring for holes in data security and phishing emails, among other threats, just isn’t a priority due to lack of bandwidth. This makes a small business an easy target for hackers and thieves because they know that small companies are vulnerable by nature and data breaches will often go undetected.
Not only are small businesses typically easy for experienced hackers to gain entry to, but the game is getting much simpler for cyber criminals. One no longer has to be technically savvy to take advantage of a vulnerable system or user. Phishing schemes and hacking kits are available for cyber criminals, and these can help deploy a number of tactics to gain access to your data. The scariest thing is that they are inexpensive and very easy to use.
According to a 2013 survey by the National Small Business Association, 44% of small businesses reported that they have experienced at least one cyber-attack. Don’t take the stance that these problems can’t happen to you. One of the most effective ways to make sure that your company is monitored 24/7 for security problems is to form a partnership with a local provider.
Managed Services providers can help maintain all or part of your IT environment depending on what you need and what staff you already have. If you’re interested in learning more about how a local MSP can help mitigate security disasters, call us. We care about helping businesses like yours secure their data and prolong the lives of their companies.