An upsurge in cybersecurity threats has been noticed in the last few years. More than 80% of small-scale firms witnessed data breaching instances in 2021 after failing to keep up with the latest cybersecurity protocols. This led to business loss, and these companies ended up losing their reputation.
Small businesses that have less than 100 employees are more vulnerable to cyberattacks. And, these enterprises have lost millions of dollars after the data security threats.
Almost 60% of small firms shut down within six-seven months after the cyberattacks. Thus, every entrepreneur should emphasise deploying effective security measures. It will be beneficial in gaining the customer’s trust in the long run.
Besides, business operators can protect sensitive information from cybercriminals. Most small business owners don’t follow any cybersecurity plan. But, you should never do that in the first place. Because it will increase the cybersecurity risks in the business.
Major Cybersecurity Threats the Small Businesses Face
More than 25% of small-scale companies filed for bankruptcy after a data breach. Among them, 13% of enterprises face challenges to continue their business operations. Without any cybersecurity protocols, it becomes difficult to retrieve the lost data.
Most of the time, cybercriminals remove business data after accessing them. This can bring a lot of inconveniences, especially when there is no data backup. Thus, small business owners should develop a data recovery strategy. It will help them to withstand the data loss events. Contact with the Smart Data Recovery experts to get effective solutions.
But, before that, the entrepreneurs should acknowledge the different types of cyberattacks. Without that, you won’t prevent the business from online hackers.
Here we have mentioned the cybersecurity threats the small businesses face:
1. Phishing Attack
Cybercriminals used this data breaching method in more than 65% of small businesses. The number of phishing attacks has increased over the years. Almost two thousand small-large companies face phishing attacks daily.
Phishing occurs when an individual clicks on a malicious email link. Then, it directs the users to a site where they are forced to download a file. Once the downloading process gets over, the hackers can access the user’s data. So, follow high-end data security solutions to combat phishing attacks.
One out of five small businesses faces ransomware attacks every year. The hackers use this method to access the company’s encrypted data. And, without paying a certain amount of money, you can’t access them. Almost 70% of small companies experienced data loss scenarios for ransomware attacks.
Use “Endpoint Protection” in office laptops or PCs to prevent this cyberattack. Businesses should follow cloud-storage solutions to secure business data.
3. Malware Attack
Though, it is easy to identify a malware-infected device. But, it could be difficult to prevent this security threat without anti-malware software. Usually, cybercriminals use this method to get the customer’s personal information.
Don’t click on any link that comes through a message or email. Even if it has come from a reputable source, verify that before opening the message. If you are unable to find the important business files, contact an IT expert immediately.
4. Man-in-the-Middle Attack
The Man-in-the-Middle attack is not limited to large organisations. Small businesses have come across this cyberattack in recent years. After this data security threat, more than 60% of companies have lost their important data.
Usually, cybercriminals use this method to access the user’s encrypted content. And, these include the necessary business application’s passwords and credit card details. So, avoid using public Wi-Fi, as these are mostly the source of MitM attacks.
5. Denial-of-Service Attack
More than 70% of small businesses experienced DDoS attacks last year. Cybercriminals use this cyberattack to block office networks or servers. As a result, the users won’t be able to further access the devices or business sites.
Don’t let this sort of cybersecurity threat hinder business productivity. Create an effective DDoS response plan with an expert’s help. Enhance the network security by using compatible web security tools.
Best Cybersecurity Protocols for Small Businesses
Data loss events are unavoidable, and you can prevent them with a data security solution. There are various safety security measures available for small businesses. You might have set a hard to detect password in the office laptop. But, that is not enough to protect small businesses. You need to introduce a few more security solutions in the company.
Enhance cybersecurity protocols and reduce cybercrimes by following these tips:
1. Use Multi-Factor Authentication
Every entrepreneur should use Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) to decrease the cybercrime rate. And, this data security measure adds an extra layer of protection to the business data. Currently, many companies are using multi-factor authentication to keep employee data safe.
This multi-step authentication makes it difficult for hackers to access the data. Without knowing the PIN or password, they can’t open any business app or email.
2. Install a Firewall
Don’t use a firewall in a small business? Then, you should add this security measure immediately. It protects the user’s device from unwanted virus and malware attacks. Even firewalls can be used to block incoming internet traffic. Besides, this security tool can identify unauthorised access attempts and suspicious activities.
So, install a firewall that will be compatible with the device’s OS.
3. Update the Business-related Applications
Outdated software or applications can cause security issues. Thus, train the employees to update these work-related apps frequently. It will reduce the potential vulnerabilities and enhance security.
Moreover, with every software update, Windows or Apple introduce new security features. So, always use the updated OS version on the device to take advantage of the latest cybersecurity protocols.
4. Enhance the Email Security
In this remote working culture, email plays a pivotal role. More than 50% of cyber attacks occur after opening email attachments. Thus, small businesses should improve their email security.
Renew the web browser’s SSL certificate to access the mails. Use a hard to presume email password. Don’t use any third-party app for checking the emails. And, enforce TLS to encrypt the email’s content.
5. Use a Secure Payment Gateway
Avoid using an unsecured payment gateway in the business. Most of the time, these apps access the client’s bank-related details. Choose a reliable payment gateway to safeguard online transactions.
The latest payment gateways use security methods, like data encryption and SET. Even some payment apps use SSL to protect the user’s sensitive data. So, consult with an expert to get the right payment gateway for the business.
6. Switch to Virtual Private Network
Small business owners should use VPN to prevent cybercrimes. It keeps the wireless network secure and helps the users to browse safely. Besides, hackers can’t track your online activities if you have a VPN.
Cybercriminals can’t even identify the user’s location. It provides end-to-end encryption to all the devices connected to the office network. So, choose a VPN service and perform the business work without any security threats.
What are Other Cybersecurity Practices for Small Businesses?
Many companies don’t take a backup of their essential business data. But, you should avoid doing this. Instead, consider restoring the files, emails, and other documents and keep them on another device. Make sure to reduce the RTO and RPO time to avoid data loss instances. Keep the important client data in three different storage mediums.
Besides, you should limit access to critical data. Train the employees not to share the business data with an unauthorised person. Secure the Wi-Fi network by switching to WPA2 from WEP. Use two-factor authentication in smartphones or laptops. And, for more data security tips, contact an IT expert immediately.