The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
The U.S. Small Business Administration sets size standards, which vary by industry, and general requirements for a business to qualify as small. But if there’s one thing that small businesses and their larger counterparts face, it is risk.
This risk comes in many forms, including an attack on computer systems and the information they contain. It’s not just data at stake, but also the trust and confidence of customers and clients whose personal data may have been compromised. As the numbers below show, the business itself can fail or fold.
The Cost of Online Incidents
Just how big of a threat do phishing, viruses, malware, and a host of different incidents pose to small businesses? Let’s put numbers to the issue.
10,000 – the approximate number of cyberattacks that small businesses face every day, according to the UK’s Federation of Small Businesses’ press release in August 2019.
GBP4.5 billion – the cost of the attacks on an annual basis, per the source above.
Forty-three percent – the percentage of online attacks aimed at small businesses, according to Verizon’s 2019 Data Breach Investigations Report.
$200,000 – the average amount that cyberattacks cost businesses (big or small), according to CBNC.com.
Sixty percent – the percentage of small businesses that went out of business as a result of a cyberattack, according to the National Cyber Security Alliance in a 2012 study.
Six months – the time it took for the affected small businesses to go out of business, based on the source above.
How to Protect Your Business from Cyberattack
The thing is small businesses are primarily the target of these threats. Possible reasons include lack of sophisticated IT infrastructure, dedicated personnel to monitor security, or, sometimes little understanding of the implications of such attacks.
It’s in your best interest and that of your company to pay close attention to your defense against malicious actors that impair or threaten your business’s very existence.
Consider this guide as a one-stop shop to manage risks and implement measures for your small business’s “cyber health and safety.”