Top cybersecurity risks facing your business (and how to stay secure) - Heart Internet Blog - Focusing on all aspects of the web

It seems like every day there’s a new report or an alert of a high-profile data breach that affected a hugely successful company. In reality, the numbers are worse.

According to a Clark School study at the University of Maryland, there is a hacker attack every 39 seconds. What’s more, it’s not just big companies that are being targeted. A surprising 65% of cyberattacks are aimed at small and medium-sized businesses.

And what happens when they do get hacked?

Attacks don’t just result in system downtime, loss of productivity, theft of information assets and lawsuits or fines. They can also cause significant damage to a company’s reputation which can result in loss of customers and revenue.

Check out our infographic for the top cybersecurity risks in 10 statistics and then read on for more details on the threats and how to combat them:

Top cybersecurity risks and threats to your business

With the significant increase in cyberattacks, the risks of a lack of cybersecurity are more widely talked about.

These risks include:

  • Compromised data. Businesses today rely heavily on the data they collect, whether it’s market research, website analytics data, account details or the personal information of customers. When a site is hacked, it’s not only that the data gets stolen but the hacker can also use, sell, alter or expose sensitive information customer information, including credit card information, intellectual properly, financial information, employee records and more.
  • Damaged reputation. No customer wants to hear that the company they trusted to keep their data safe has been hacked. The next obvious step for most people will be to leave the business and go elsewhere. This results not only in a damaged reputation but also in a loss of customers and revenue.
  • Financial repercussions and costly recovery expenses. A cyberattack not only puts information at risk but it can also have devastating financial repercussions. Whether it’s in the form of lawsuits or fines, system downtime, loss of productivity, acquiring new software or the lengthy process of restoring lost data, the loss of both time and money can cripple a business. Curious to know how much? According to a recent report, companies spent an average of $879,582 because of damage or theft of IT assets. In addition, disruption to normal operations cost an average of $955,429.

If you want to prevent these losses and keep your site and data safe and secure, you need to get a better understanding of what leads to these cyberattacks.

Here are some of the weakest links for most businesses when it comes to cybersecurity.

People

Did you know that 95% of cybersecurity breaches are attributed to human error?

In other words, the majority of data breaches are caused by people, most often your own employees making simple mistakes like visiting malware-infected sites, falling for phishing attempts, bringing compromised USB drives or unprotected personal devices to work.

So what can you do to minimise cybersecurity risks from people:

  • Provide cybersecurity training. Did you know that 95% of phishing attacks are linked to software installation on a user’s device? That’s why it’s critical to educate your employees about phishing attacks and malware so they’re informed and less likely to do something that can compromise your cybersecurity.
  • Limit their access to only the specific information and resources they need to do their job.
  • With 230,000 of new malware samples produced every day, it’s essential to use malware scanning software to quickly identify potentially dangerous malware in email attachments and on websites and block users from downloading them in the first place.

Passwords

Weak passwords provide hackers with an easy way to attack a website. That’s why it’s important to ensure that any accounts associated with your site are secured by a strong password and a two-factor authentication, if possible. Make it clear to your employees as well as to your customers that they shouldn’t reuse passwords from other online accounts.

Patch management

Out-of-date or missing patches in software and apps can also make your site vulnerable to cyberattacks. So make sure that any technology you use is up-to-date and that you create and maintain a rigorous patching schedule.

Another thing you can do is to use website security solution to actively monitor and scan your site for indications of compromise.

Why is this important? Because a hacker usually spends an average of 146 days within a network before being detected. So by the time you realise a breach has occurred, it’s too late and the damage is done. That’s why taking regular action to audit and secure a network is essential.

Our Website Security tool, which is powered by Sucuri, can help with that. It actively scans your site to find malicious payloads, malware locations, security issues, and blacklist status with major authorities. If the site is found to be infected, you’ll get a warning message with further details, including payloads and blacklist warnings.

In conclusion

Cyber attackers are smart and they’re constantly finding new ways to access your sensitive data. You can’t afford to ignore the importance of website security, not when there’s so much at stake, including employee and customer data, reputation, revenue as well as sensitive company information.

While using our Website Security tool to protect your website may seem like an added expense, the cost of doing nothing could spell the end for your business. So take steps now to assess your current situation and protect your business against a cyberattack.

 

 

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