Many large businesses usually have invested heavily on their security given that they usually know what they have at stake-it is usually a lot!
However, when it comes to small and middle sized businesses, they are usually reluctant to dedicate a good amount of their capital and revenue on their company’s physical and cyber security.
Most of them think that they are too small a company to be a target for attackers or rather what they have at stake is really not worth investing that much. Well, that is the wrong approach!
Cyber criminals do not spare SMBs
In fact, small and middle-sized businesses have an equal need to put in a good security system in place as that of large businesses. Do you doubt it?
Take an example of Codespace, a small and middle-sized business that went out of business just 6 months after it had a major cyber-attack. This was just an illustration that also small and medium business stands to lose even more in the case of a security breach compared to large businesses.
In fact, recent reports state that up to a huge 60% of small and medium-sized companies run down within six months of a major attack on the company, unlike large businesses which only suffer a for a financial quarter or at most a year before getting back on its feet.
Now that you know some of these facts, here are a few reasons of security why cyber criminals normally target small and middle-sized businesses:
- They are easier to infiltrate since they have not invested much on their security hence giving the attackers an easy time on the playground.
- Although they might be small, a good number of them have access to valuable information, which will translate to good money for attackers.
- Small and middle-sized businesses are more likely to pay ransom to these attackers to get their company back since they have no expertise to stop the attack.
This therefore calls for urgent measures from the perspective of small and medium-sized businesses to boost their firm’s security because who knows, attackers may be attacking your business next.
How to boost security in SMBs
Boosting security in these small and middle-sized businesses is usually tricky, as it has to be done in a sensible way such that it must be easy to deploy and it should require minimal IT management since most of these organization do not have enough man power.
It should also be easy to use and greatest of all; it should be affordable enough to fit in the company’s financial scope. Here are six steps that will help small and middle-sized businesses to boost their company’s security.
1 Establishing a data security plan for the whole business:
This includes deciding on a suitable method of protecting your firms’ data such a necessary security appliances and software to protect your company. It also involves restriction of access privileges’ to employees about their level in the firm and in the case of a breach scenario.
It is also vital to define the measures to be taken to handle the attacks such that it causes little harm possible on the business operations. Examples of best network security appliances for SMBs are Enterprise-class UTM for SMbs, WatchGuard Firebox T10 etc.
2 Training and educating employees on secure data handling:
Most breaches are usually facilitated by are an insider in any level in the business whether intentionally or not. Therefore, by training them on how to handle data, they will be careful on their practices hence leaving no loophole for an attack.
Employees are also required to report any unusual activity in the system since may be it can be an attack underway. Consequences should be dictated clearly to the employee to prevent cases of insider threat.
3 Establishing a good data storage policy:
This is just a precaution that should be taken by firms as a precaution in case of an attack which leads to loss of data. This would enable them to get back on their feet as soon as possible and make necessary repairs on the system that would prevent further attacks of the similar manner in the future.
This policy will also outline what data must be retained, what should be disposed, and who can access the stored data. This will reduce the risk by a considerably huge percentage.
4 Embracing and training the mobile workforce:
Mobile workforce is connected to the company base by use of devices such as laptops and phones which in these situations are referred to as endpoints. These ends are usually the most vulnerable point of the system and therefore the task force at the ends must be well trained on how to perform their operations with utmost care to prevent system loopholes.
The mobile devices also should not be allowed to access the company’s network without complying with the company’s security policies. This prevents third party entry into the network and access company data.
5 Encrypting the business network with the highest form of encryption:
Strong and the most recent form of encryption using SSL certificate is necessary for an organization, which protects personal details such as names addresses and payment details.
However, firms should not solely depend on encryptions as its only form of encryption since professional hackers can find their way around encryptions.
6 Taking a multilayered security solution:
Since most SMBs lack the enough work forces for their security staff, they should look for a security solution, which targets both internal and external threats, attacks, and malicious intention before it happens actually.
They should look for a multilayered solution that is easy to install manage and maintain from a trustable security solutions vendor.
It is a high time for the small and middle-sized businesses to mind their security and giving it the attention it really deserves. They should understand that criminals these days have shifted their focus to them and they are the new targets.
Luckily, with the above steps and many other minor solutions, small and middle-sized businesses are able to take care of their security threats at a manageable and an affordable cost with digging deep into the firm’s finances.
Author Bio: Gunjan Tripathi is Digital Marketing Executive of the Cheap SSL Shop – Globally SSL certificate reseller of Comodo. He has in-depth knowledge and understanding of Cyber security. He writes article related to Big Data Protection, Cloud Security, BYOB Security, Internet Of Things (IOT), Mobile Security etc. to create awareness and share knowledge.