Are Small Businesses Safe from Cyber Attacks?

Craig Pollack | Feb 19, 2014

Topics: Cybersecurity

cyber-attackWith all the focus on large retailers such as Target, Neiman Marcus, and Michaels being breached by hackers, many small businesses are living in an unrealistic comfort zone. 

After all, since hackers are going after the big boys, a little business like yours won’t be on their radar.  Right?

Actually, this couldn’t be further from the truth.  A recent story by ABC News discusses the problem with small businesses’ false sense of security. 

Titled “Small Businesses: Prepare to be Breached”, this story lists 91 breaches reported in the first 43 days of 2014 as compiled by the Identity Theft Resource Center and demonstrates that not only are big name companies being targeted but a variety of small businesses as well. 

These SMB’s tend to think they’re off the hacker’s radar, but in many cases just the opposite is true.  SMB’s tend to not invest in the proper amount of resources for network security and thus, actually make more of an easy target.

There are many steps small businesses can take to help protect themselves - including 24/7 active monitoring of their entire network, making sure they aren’t leaving open holes for hackers to exploit, making sure employees don’t click on spear-fishing emails, and making sure no one leaves unsecured devices or files unattended. 

If a business is running Windows XP anywhere on their network, they really need to consider upgrading immediately to Windows 7 or 8.  April 8th is when Microsoft stops supporting Windows XP which will leave everyone still running XP vulnerable to hackers who are ready to exploit this golden opportunity.

Many companies think they’re invisible to hackers because they think hackers won’t find their company’s data profitable enough to go after.  But this is a HUGE mistake.  And millions of companies are going to continue running Windows XP in their networks thinking the savings will be worth the risk to their data.  Again big mistake. 

Because all it takes is one successful hacker getting access to a clearly vulnerable gateway and literally everything your company relies on - your entire infrastructure is open for the taking.  Modern hackers are no longer going after a company’s network just to be mischievous.

Modern hackers are going after everything - the credit card information, the payroll and banking data, the employees records, everything.  They’re also going after access to leverage your resources and get into other networks through yours. 

Monitoring data 24/7 and securing an entire company’s network is a challenging task, even for the most computer literate small business.  But using a quality Managed Service Provider such as FPA Technology Services eliminates the risk and the stress of keeping one step ahead of the hackers. 

FPA protects a company’s entire infrastructure and monitors everything ensuring the threats never enter in the first place.  If anything ever goes wrong, FPA proactively eliminates the threat keeping the company up and running without interruption. 

Remember, all it takes is one breach by any one of the endless number of hackers out there and a company could pay a tremendous price.  And it doesn’t matter what size you are – Target or a small business.  No pun intended here – but everyone’s a target.

 

Author

Craig Pollack

Craig Pollack

Craig is the Founder & CEO of FPA Technology Services, Inc. Craig provides the strategy and direction for FPA, ensuring its clients, business owners, and key decision makers leverage technology as efficiently and effectively as possible. With over 25 years of experience building the preeminent IT Service Provider in the Southern California area, Craig is one of the area’s leading authorities on how small to mid-sized businesses can best secure and leverage their technology to achieve their business objectives.

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