It’s no secret that as time goes on, we as consumers are witnesses to groundbreaking technology that is changing how we interact with the world. These advances include easy access to broadband internet for all. Now, it’s common for organizations to use a vast array of hardware and software to help complete vital business goals. This dependency on hardware and software means that companies are reliant on the internet to handle everyday tasks and store sensitive information.
The World-Wide Challenge of Cybersecurity
With such advances in technology, there, of course, an increased risk for cyber-attacks. One attack now can take down an organization’s entire infrastructure and force a halt to all activities. These attacks can happen with a simple click in a questionable email. One wrong click and social security numbers, birthdays, credit card numbers, and more are all now at the mercy of a cybercriminal. All it takes is one attack, to cripple a company’s reputation (i.e., Equifax).
In recent times, you don’t have to look far in the media to find a recent high-profile breach. However, large companies are not the only target for these attacks. In fact, according to research from the Ponemon Institute, 61% of small and medium businesses experienced a cyber attack in the past year. Despite such a large percentage, there is no mention of these small business attacks in the news.
Due to the technological advances, cybercriminals can execute attacks more quickly and for less money. If an attack fails, the attacker doesn’t lose much. Smaller companies are prime targets for these attacks since they often have data for their much larger clients. This notion means that businesses, no matter the size are at risk for an attack.
The Struggle is Real to Secure Data
Despite the knowledge of cyber-attacks, the number of attacks on small companies continues to grow at a high rate. It’s important to understand why small companies struggle with getting top-notch protection.
So Many Choices
One possible reason for this growth could be the number of cybersecurity products that are available on the market. So many options on the market can confuse purchasers and lead to the assumption that once a user deploys a product, a company is automatically safe. In fact, 71% of small and medium businesses still experienced an attack with anti-virus in place.
Time is of the Essence
At a small company, it’s inevitable that employees wear many hats. With such fewer employees, it’s hard to dedicate 100% focus on the thousands of alerts (often which are false positives) they receive from their security products. In fact, Cisco has reported that 44% of security alerts are merely ignored based on time.
Some small organizations have IT teams in place, but not all are that lucky. One of the most significant problems facing organizations is the lack of skilled personnel. Smaller teams mean that they can have a difficult time identifying and mitigating all the possible threats that come through. The cost of being a cybercriminal is lowering, but the cost to protect against them is increasing.
Outsmarting the Cybercriminal
Cybercriminals are aware of the challenges that small organizations face, and use it to their advantage. Attacks are explicitly built to target the weaknesses mentioned above. The question now is how a small organization can protect their data and not fall victim to such an attack?
Look for Help
Small organizations shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help. Working with an outsider security provider can be beneficial. A third-party security company can help enhance your current IT team as security threats continue to grow. Such a partnership can bolster ongoing efforts with minimal impact on your existing IT resources.
Know your Needs
Decide to work with a third-party? Great! Make sure you ask the right questions and choose a security company that fits your organization’s needs. Having a security team that aligns with your current organization’s objectives can vastly help your existing IT team address threats.
SOC it to Them
Think about employing a SOC-as-a-service to help mitigate problems. Powerful IT departments don’t have to be just for large companies. Using an external security operations center (SOC) can provide continuous monitoring and analysis of data to improve your incident detection. 24/7 monitoring through a SOC gives organizations an advantage to defend against incidents and intrusions, regardless of source, time of day, or attack type. The smaller that gap between compromise and detection, the better. This way, your organization remains secure even as cyber attacks evolve.
Company Size Doesn’t Matter
Just because your organization doesn’t have a sprawling IT department, doesn’t mean you can’t have the protection you deserve. Cybercriminals don’t discriminate based on size, so it’s crucial to strengthen cybersecurity protection before it’s too late. Don’t let your small business become part of the statistic.