Small Business Cyber Risk – The Unseen Threat

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For many small businesses, cyber risk is flying under the radar. Most companies know they have to pay attention to cybersecurity, but there is always something tangible to shift focus elsewhere.

Almost 50 percent of small businesses have experienced a cyber attack. 

Got your attention with that piece of data? It is time to bring cyber risk onto the radar.

 

Do you run a business in Las Vegas, Memphis, or Charlotte? How about Houston or Providence?

 

Businesses in those areas listed above are most likely to be hit with cyber-attacks than any other metros in the United States. In a recent report by the Coronet, an international security firm, more than 1 million data endpoints were examined to ascertain the vulnerability level of infrastructure and devices. The threat score index was 0 to 10 with the unacceptable exposure score being above 6.5. The threat score for those cites was between 9.0 and 10.00.

 

What makes these cities high risk?

 

Overall small businesses tend to have less awareness and fewer resources for cybersecurity than larger enterprises. Small companies have embraced technology to allow them to sell their products and services. Unintentionally increasing their risk level along the way using the cloud, BYOD (bring-your-own-device) policies, and remote employees. All of this results in less control over networks and devices used by employees.

So what makes these cities a higher risk specifically?

People + industries + underfunded cybersecurity budgets = cyber-attacks.

Las Vegas being one of the world’s top destinations for trade shows creates a golden opportunity for cybercriminals. Think about all that public Wi-Fi available in the casinos, restaurants, and hotels. So if you are attending a conference in Las Vegas, then there is a 43 percent probability of connecting to a high-risk network. Memphis, Charlotte, and Houston are home to large enterprises such as FedEx in Memphis. One of the US’s largest banks, Bank of America, is based in Charlotte, and the City of Charlotte recently dealt with a crippling ransomware attack costing the city millions of dollars. Houston is an oil and energy center. Healthcare is Rhode Island’s fastest growing industries making Providence a target for cyber-attacks to obtain online patient records.

 

What can a CEO do?

 

The first step is understanding that cybersecurity is more than an IT issue, but a public relations crisis as well. It is a risk to the business. When there are cyber attacks and data compromised, it affects consumer trust and the organization’s reputation within its industry. They will be asking how, why, and what’s next. How you communicate the What’s Next is just as essential the steps you are taking behind the scenes security-wise to protect the organization’s data.

Leadership Takeaways

–  Almost 50 percent of small businesses have experienced a cyber attack per research by the National Cyber Security Alliance.

–  Where you are located has an impact on the likelihood for a cyber attack.

– Running a business in these five metro-area put your business in high-risk: Las Vegas, Memphis, Charlotte, Houston, and Providence.

– What makes these metro-areas high risk: People + industries + underfunded cybersecurity budgets = cyber-attacks.

– Cybersecurity is more than an IT issue, but a reputational issue.

We can advise you on navigating how, why, and what’s next when a cyber-attack happens.

 

 

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