By: Markus Witcomb
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A recent survey saw an increase in small businesses being targeted by Cyber Attacks with a whopping 48% by the end of 2016 reporting they had been “attacked”
Our analysis shows that small businesses have become a big target for phishers. Last year, phishing campaigns targeted small businesses 43% of the time. That’s up 11% over 2014 and a stark contrast to the mere 17% of attacks that focused on small businesses in 2012.
A recent report shows that about 1 in 40 small businesses are at risk of being the victim of a cyber crime. That pales in comparison to the 1 in about 2 large businesses which are targeted every year — multiple times — with a cyber attack.
Still, the report indicates that hackers are indiscriminately choosing their victims. It’s not a matter of who they’re targeting but what they’re targeting … your money, your business data.
Ransomware attacks are also on the rise and targeting not only employees but any devices connected to a company’s hacked network, including attacks on smartphones – be that business or personal, smart watches, and smart televisions. In these attacks, there is a demand for some type of payment before a device may be freed by its attacker.
Digging a little deeper into the data the report reveals a 58% increase from 2014 to 2015 in the amount of spear-phishing campaigns that target employees of a business of any size. The report classifies small businesses as any with up to 250 employees.
So, what should small business owners do with this information? Be prepared is the simple advice.
It’s clear that hackers will continue to target small businesses with phishing attack and having the right safeguards in place will be crucial for survival. Safeguards include the right awareness training to employees and of course Endpoint protection solutions such as Sophos Endpoint Protection.
Since cyber attacks target small business, it’s more likely your small business will become the target or victim of a phishing attack. Develop a plan for dealing with such a situation. Consult with your IT team or an IT expert on a comprehensive plan for mitigating the impact of a phishing or other cyber attack against your company.
Finally, with the rise in attacks on devices connected to your company’s network, it’s best to control what these devices can do when connected — employee smartphones and other IoT devices — you allow on it.
As a Sophos Partner we have a range of intelligent solutions for small businesses that can keep you, your employees, your business and your clients secure from any future cyber-attacks.