Though the cyber attacks on businesses are increasing yet people are not paying much attention — It’s time to protect your business from hackers

Reports of hackers attacking big businesses like Target and Ashley Madison is a norm. The data acquired by them through such attacks is their strongest driving force. In today’s world, knowledge is power and the data about any business are the biggest sources of knowledge for the company.

Having a small business doesn’t make you immune to such cyber-attacks. The chances of a hacker targeting your business are as high as them targeting a company engaged in a large scale business such as Target. According to the reports of Hewlett Packard and the Ponemon Institute of Cyber Crime, hacking costs $15.4 million per year to an average American firm.

This alone should be a cause of concern for the small business as they may not fully recover after such a cyber-attack onto their business. And if you thought that hackers attack only large business and not the smaller ones, then the survey by the Endurance International Group might be an eye opener for you. According to the survey, 31% of all small businesses have experienced a cyber-attack or an attack have been attempted on them.

You may not even know that your business has been compromised because of the sneaky way in which such attacks are carried out. So, it is your responsibility to keep a check on any malicious attacks. Thus, here are some of the reasons due to which such attacks are carried out.

1. Lack of cyber-security plan

The data, by Endurance, that only 43% if the small businesses invest in cyber-security, might surprise you, but this stands true. Such businesses are a soft target for such hackers as most of their businesses are carried out on cloud servers which are not encrypted. Lack of awareness amongst the employees is another reason for the business becoming a soft target. Employees might install third-party software which might make such systems vulnerable which, in turn, makes the entire network prone to cyber-attacks.

2. Use of portable devices

Use of smartphones/tablet PCs has been becoming extremely prominent. This fact has made mobile phones as a gateway for hackers to reach the main servers or enabled them to access the data of such businesses. Most employees do not have required security systems on their devices and as a result, become a victim of cyber-attacks. Most people do not verify the areas which any third party app can access on your devices. This makes their devices as well as the entire business prone to cyber-attacks.

3. Ignorance

Ignorance about the possibility of a cyber-attack is another aspect that makes the businesses vulnerable. Further, businesses (mostly small businesses) are not up to date about most cyber-security threats. Most businesses fail to recognize that a leaving employee can spill the beans to a third party or can still access the company’s files through the passwords provided by you. Hiring a full-time cyber-security team might be difficult, financially, for some businesses, but it’s an investment worth a shot.

Why are hackers so much less fearful of police, than internet businesses fear patent trolls?

How to guard your business against such attacks?

Here are some tips which you can use to secure your business against such attacks:

  • Identify the area of your business which is at most risk and takes proper security steps to mend loopholes in the security of such areas.
  • Boost your security strategy by incorporating exploit prevention and application isolation such as Palo Alto Networks’ Trap Advanced Endpoint Protection, Malwarebytes’ Anti-Exploit.
  • Hire an external cyber-security agency to look after the security need of your business.
  • Automated scans of every nook and corner of your business once a fortnight or a month.

Endnote

Cyber-security must be the prime concern for your business. As a single incident of a cyber-attack can have a devastating spell upon your business. Large businesses are able to hire security experts to avoid any such situation, but if you’re a small business owner then you must take a look at the preventive measures to avoid any such incident. Stay safe!

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Ali Raza

Ali is a freelance journalist, having 5 years of experience in web journalism and marketing. He contributes to various online publications. With a master degree, now he combines his passions for writing about internet security and technology. When he is not working, he loves traveling and playing games.