There have been a number of notable hacking attacks that compromised sensitive data for a few very notable national brands in the last several months, but the fact of the matter is that these kinds of attacks happen all the time and are often not publicized very well. Small businesses are often not only affected by such incidents, but also targeted for them, for a very specific reason.
There is in fact a reason why the breaches suffered by companies such as Target, Nieman Marcus, and more are so noteworthy, beyond those companies’ status as major brands, according to a report from the Huffington Post. It is simply that those companies have the security infrastructures to repel nearly all attacks perpetrated against them. However, when it comes to smaller businesses, they simply do not have the budgets to deal with most security issues and are therefore extremely vulnerable to such attacks.
It may not necessarily occur to many owners that they could be targeted, though, the report said. After all, the amount of sensitive information – for the companies themselves, their employees, and their customers or clients – they actually protect is likely to be small. But because large companies can devote such significant resources to protecting their vast troves of such data, hacking their systems is likely to be either extremely difficult or impossible; meanwhile, smaller companies without such protections may be relatively easy pickings that take little time or effort to obtain.
What can small companies do?
Fortunately, when it comes to actually protecting this data, small businesses can take a number of steps to do so, most for relatively low costs, the report said. That should include investing in firewall and anti-virus software to protect against the most basic types of attacks, and undertaking some training sessions to let employees know about the kinds of danger they may face via phishing attacks or bringing sensitive work data home with them can likely go a long way toward limiting such liability overall.
Of course, owners who want to devote more funds to such issues may do well to consider the ways in which they can reduce other costs as well, such as by finding more affordable small business insurance. They might also want to obtain tech insurance in particular, as this kind of coverage can help to significantly mitigate the expenses related to dealing with a data breach when these incidents do occur.