Recent news has been full of high-profile IT security breaches such as the theft of customer data from British Airways, but I have to remind smaller businesses that they are not ‘flying under the radar’ of attackers when it comes to being vulnerable.
According to a recent study from the insurance firm Hiscox, 47% of small businesses surveyed in the US, UK, and Europe, had suffered at least one cyber attack during the past 12 months. Contrast this with the fact that 51% of SMBs don’t see themselves as a target (Switchfast survey). Does anyone else see the problem?
Switchfast’s conclusion is “the actions of small business employees and leaders reveal little is actually being done to address the lax attitude toward security. Negligent employees are the number one cause of data breaches at small businesses.”
What sort of negligence is Switchfast referring to? Firewall vendor Fortinet put their finger on it when they reported their monitoring shows that cybercriminals are only exploiting 5.7% of known vulnerabilities. So the conclusion is that SMBs simply aren’t applying published fixes and updates in a timely fashion. By taking this fundamental step, SMBs could go a long way toward protecting themselves from a cyber attack.
So why don’t SMBs do a better job with updates and patches? Those that manage this themselves tend to forget about it or perhaps only try to ‘do something’ on a 6-month or yearly basis. Or they miss less obvious updates such as those needed for firewalls, routers, switches, and wireless access points.
What’s a good strategy? Find an IT partner with the automation tools to handle this for you. Regardless of whether you have in internal IT resource or you do-it-yourself, modern automation tools such as those provided by MicroData’s Managed Services can eliminate concerns about patching, monitoring, and many cyber security threats – and for pennies a day.