It’s a misconception that cybersecurity is only something that big businesses need to worry about. In reality, it’s less about what your business does or the size of your organisation than it is about how easy it is to penetrate.
Cyber criminals target the most vulnerable businesses as well as industry leaders as there’s more chance of success and a low chance of being caught – so don’t make the mistake of thinking small businesses are under the radar. Here’s some insight into the threats these businesses face and security best practices that can keep you safe.
What Security Threats Do Small Businesses Face?
- DDoS Attacks – A distributed denial of service attack (DDoS) is one that uses up all your IT resources in order to overwhelm your IT system and paralyse your business. Your website functionality will be unusable by customers, your networks will be down, and your entire IT system will be unresponsive during the attack, which can last almost any length of time. These are basic but effective attacks that are easy to implement but very difficult to defend against, and antivirus software and a firewall isn’t enough.
Best practice solution – Having an IT partner who can evaluate your network, strengthen your defences and monitor for suspicious activity.
- Misconfigured Tech – While most businesses use IT extensively (website, customer relationship management tools, enterprise resource management tools, industry software, etc.), most businesses are not IT specialists. This means that IT tools can be set up and implemented inexpertly, resulting in vulnerabilities in the form of non-optimal configurations, poor IT management and failure to implement critical upgrades.
Best practice solution – Use an IT partner who has the experience, resources and industry knowledge to design and implement tech solutions effectively, and then manage them for your business. This will ensure vulnerabilities are prevented, updates are run timeously, and your software runs seamlessly.
- Ransomware – Ransomware attacks happen to small and large businesses as well as governmental operations, costing businesses a huge amount of money 9Approximately US$1.2 million per attack) as well as 2 days on average in downtime. Even private individuals find themselves victims of ransomware, so it’s a mistake to think small businesses are too small to notice. Ransomware is easily downloaded onto a network through malware and, once a computer is infected, it will move quickly through your network – locking you out of your system and files. You then have to pay a ransom in order to get the key to unlock your system. It is impossible to regain access without this key.
Best practice solution – Work with an IT solutions provider who has extensive experience managing security, who can evaluate your network and implement defences against ransomware attacks. It is important that they offer disaster recovery management too, as no one can protect you 100%. With regular backups to a secure location, you can restore your files and systems with minimal disruption.
- Unintentional errors – One of the greatest security vulnerabilities will always be an organisation’s employees. Poor cybersecurity knowledge and a lack of organisational security policies and training make it easy for employees to mistakenly expose the business to cyber criminals. Whether it’s by opening a suspicious attachment, using a BYOD on an unsecure network, or responding to an urgent email for cash from an account that looks authentic (known as CEO fraud), your employees can easily be the biggest vulnerability in the system.
Best practice solution – Choose a managed IT services provider who will work one-on-one with your organisation to implement a comprehensive solution, including training employees in cyber security best practices and guiding your security policies.
Living in a digital world has so many advantages, especially for businesses – but they do come at a cost. An established managed IT service provider is a fantastic resource for minimising your business’s risks and delivering peace of mind, helping to keep your customer data, business data and employees secure while delivering your competitive edge through cutting-edge tech solutions.
At Milan Industries, our KPIs are focused on client satisfaction, not sales, with our teams focussed on how we can help your business navigate the digital world successfully. We continually train our team and adapt to new technologies so you don’t have to, and we work with your organisation to discover what you need within a budget that works.
Contact us today for more information on our managed IT services, cloud solutions, data security and more – we’ll help you future-proof your business.