How to protect your small business from cyber threats in 2018
Cyberattacks can devastate a company's cash flow. Hackers steal your customer's information, leading them to lose trust in your business, or completely down your systems - a cyberattack could mean you'll have to stop doing business for days or even weeks.
These attacks are becoming both more common and more devastating. Juniper Research estimates that the global cost of data breaches will reach US$2.1 trillion by 2019.
For small businesses, the threat of cyber is especially concerning, as they often don't have the budget to hire cybersecurity professionals and expensive technology. In fact, only one in four small businesses claim they are "well prepared" for a cyberattack, Netwrix research indicates.
SME owners shouldn't despair, however - there are plenty of things you can do to protect your small business.
1) Patch and update software
It's easy to delay a software update - after all, you've got a million and one things you need to do to ensure your business runs smoothly. However, you'll be ruing the day you didn't click "update now" if you ever do experience a cyberattack.
It may take a few minutes, but software updates are extremely important in ensuring systems and software have the latest cybersecurity protections in place, and are often especially designed to guard against specific threats.
2) Regular staff training
Did you know that human error is a factor in 95 per cent of all cyberattacks, according to IBM? Your employees might not mean to, but they could accidentally be giving away passwords and other sensitive information because of phishing scams and other hacking methods. It's therefore essential you provide your staff with regular training to help them identify threats.
3) Know your data
We live in a digital age where almost everything is recorded. This means even the smallest of businesses will be surprised by the amount and type of data they've collected since opening their doors. It's important you know exactly what data you have (especially customer information) so that you can ensure it is adequately protected.
4) Create a password policy
All too often, shared computers and other technology means businesses use simple passwords that hackers can easily steal. To counteract this you should create a password policy that details basic requirements for all account passwords in your business. These should include having a combination of numbers, symbols and letters for the strongest passwords possible.
5) Take out Cyber insurance
There are an increasing number of insurance products aimed at small businesses that can help mitigate the risk. Check whether your business insurance covers any Cyber risks and, if not, either talk to a broker or look online for a policy that suits your pocket and meets your business needs.
If your cash flow suffers an unexpected dip from something like a cyberattack, Classic Funding Group can help. Our debtor finance facility allows businesses to take out a loan against the amount of their outstanding invoices.
Contact us today for more information.