According to a recent estimate by McAfee, cybercrime cost businesses $375 billion worldwide in 2014. That's an astounding number and it speaks to the fact that more businesses, big and small are falling victim to hacking, phishing, and lost revenue due to compromised systems. In case you are wondering, that's the conservative estimate from their study! The actual costs could be much higher.
Even large retailers such as Target and Home Depot have had massive security breaches in recent years. However, increasingly, small and midsize businesses are becoming the victims of cybercrime.
In fact, a 2013 Verizon security review found that more than half of data breach incidents were at companies with less than 1,000 employees according to this article by CNN. Symantec is also cited as finding that 31% of cyberattacks, nearly one third of all attacks, happened at businesses with less than 250 employees.
This should be a clear warning to small businesses that you can't take a "Wait and see" attitude, or "We'll cross that bridge when we get to it". It's more than the cost of lost business. You run the risk of losing assets when financial information is exposed through a data breach. Hackers can gain access to your accounts and literally transfer your money away.
For any small businesses that process credit cards, you may also be putting your customers' assets at risk by not taking stronger measures to secure your computers, devices, and network.
The best way to combat the cost of cybercrime is to take precautionary measures. A managed services plan that keeps your computers, devices, and network automatically up to date will help prevent the technical exploits that hackers use to gain access to your systems.
The next step is to train your staff in best practices to prevent you and your team from becoming the weakest link in the IT security chain at your business.
We've got a great article with a set of 6 Tips to Prevent Hackers and Phishing and we've also prepared a 10-page PDF white paper which includes Advanced Directives for Protecting Your Business from Hacking and Phishing. In the 10-page PDF we provide straightforward steps to improve your security and further protect your information and assets. As always, Coastal is here to keep you and your business safe.