According to recent reports, cyberattacks are occurring every 39 seconds in the US. Sounds impressive, doesn’t it? What’s more, one attack can harm millions of people. For example, when Atlanta was attacked using ransomware called SamSam, the city was offline for five days, which halted several significant citywide operations. As a result, the amount of recovery cost reached $17 million.

Cyberattacks can also happen on a global scale with hackers breaching big government organizations. The National Cyber Security Center warns everyone that Russia is exploiting network infrastructure devices to lay the groundwork for future attacks on infrastructure like power stations and energy grids.

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There has been more than enough to worry about for the small business owner in the last 12 months. The checklist of things that have changed overnight probably covers every aspect of their business, foremost amongst them possibly that their entire workforce could now be working remotely.

While getting a company through the last 12 months could be considered achievement enough on its own, there are some more challenges to be faced by the small business owner if that survival is going to continue. Two things stand out as needing immediate attention, both of them requiring an upgrade to IT services.

Firstly the attraction of new customers in the current crisis and secondly the increased need for an effective cybersecurity strategy to combat the rise in cybercrime since the pandemic began.

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According to the Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, there are 30.2 million small businesses in the United States, making up 99.9% of all businesses in the country. Due to such a sizeable representative percentage, any discussion about cybersecurity statistics should focus on small businesses.

While the SBA defines small businesses as any business with less than 500 employees, most have far fewer, making them soft targets for cybercriminals. For small businesses, fewer resources mean they should approach cybersecurity in a much different way to larger enterprises, using more innovative and more agile protection methods. 

Small Businesses Cybersecurity Plan

A small business cybersecurity plan outlines the steps and measures to secure a business from attacks like malware, phishing, and ransomware. While most small businesses may not see the need to document such a plan, it is critical to ensure compliance across the company. 

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The evolution of technologies and Internet connectivity has ushered in a new revolution where data transfer has become faster than ever before.

On the other hand, this has also resulted in increased data threats to organizations, with rising incidences of data breaches being reported on a massive scale. Apart from the financial implications, these cyber-attacks lead to loss of business reputation for companies, negatively impacting their revenue and trust among customers.

Thus, online enterprises need to step up their security measures to ensure more excellent safety and transparency by following appropriate cybersecurity tips suitable to their business.

How may cybersecurity awareness be used to protect your organization?

Employees are one of the most significant assets for every organization, especially when it comes to protecting the privacy and security of your online data and business information. Thus, they need to be educated regarding the pros and cons of sharing sensitive data with external customers and third-party users.

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2020 has initiated a sea change into the way organisations of all shapes and sizes approaches business. The new normal is here to stay for a while even after the pandemic subsides and remote and anywhere operations will remain the new norm for companies across the world. To meet the new needs of remote consumers and clients, companies have tried their very best to leverage technological assets for seamless delivery of products and services.

However, security has remained a concern as data breaches have raised dramatically with 36 billion records exposed just in the first half of 2020. If there is a New Year’s resolution going forward for businesses, it should one of building resilience and a secure environment for our partners, customers, employees and the extended network. Keeping and building on their trust has never been more important than at this particular juncture in history.

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Understanding is the first step to combating Phishing: Types, Methodology & Prevention Tips 

According to the 2019 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) by Verizon, phishing is the leading cause of data breaches. The data also shows us that phishing is also widely utilized for cyber espionage with more than three-quarters of all known incidents involving phishing.

The statistics are also resonated by IBM’s findings in the 2019 Cost of a Data Breach report, where fifty-one per cent of incidents in all surveyed organizations involved malicious attacks with “malware infections, criminal insiders, phishing/social engineering and SQL injection.” 

Clearly, phishing continues to dominate as the one of the most persistent and highly effective tools of cyber-attacks. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at what phishing is, types of phishing and how to protect your business from these types of attacks.

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What happens when your co-passengers are engrossed in their mobiles/ PDAs and the driver feels drowsy at the wheel? Well, he can’t monitor the road for safe driving, that’s for sure. Unfortunately, the threats that cybersecurity experts have to deal with on a daily basis are a bit less obvious than hulking frames of glass and metal hurtling your way. And yet, as the business’ first line of defence against potential threats, they are expected to be on alert 24*7 year in and year out.

In a recent study, Accenture reported that nearly 68% of business leaders feel on edge about rapidly ramping cybersecurity risks. The view is amplified by RiskBased who report an estimated 36 billion data records breached just in the first half of 2020. With remote operations and anywhere operations becoming the norm in the aftermath of the pandemic, a rise in digital breaches was expected. But even so, the scale and number of attacks in 2020 has been unnerving. Moreover, with 5G connectivity enabling faster speeds and bandwidth of connected devices; it also has the untoward effect of making cyber-attacks faster and more efficient. And yet, Varonis reports that only 5% of companies have adequate security structures in place to protect business information in folders.

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2020 has been a year of learning for businesses on many levels. From enabling global remote practically overnight to switching to cloud-based applications and infrastructure – the list of learnings has been long. But none have managed to make quite a dent as much as the dramatic rise in malicious attacks on cloud and on-site networks. If anything, 2020 has been the year of the pandemic as well as large-scale, well-publicized security breaches.

According to RiskBased, just the first half of 2020 saw nearly 36 billion records exposed in data breaches. Verizon showed that 45% of breaches involved hacking, 17% were malware-based and 22% were phishing attacks. Suffice to say that the need for comprehensive cybersecurity planning and management has never been quite this palpable.

The financial cost of data breaches is only the tip of the iceberg with IBM estimating the average cost to be around $3.86 million in 2020 with an average lifecycle of around 280 days from identification to containment. Even a minor breach can leave businesses with exposed sensitive information that can leave users vulnerable to identity theft, financial damage, ruin the reputation of your business and leave you liable for compliance violations. Companies like IT Support Vermont can help businesses locally to adjust to the quickly changing cyber-attack landscape to try and adapt their technologies, processes, and policies.

Cybersecurity threats are only expected to evolve and grow increasingly difficult to identify and eliminate. So, without further ado…,

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The global cloud computing market is set to reach $623.3 billion by 2023. The cloud is the ultimate tool in building highly scalable and flexible networks that can be set up in a flash. This offers a great opportunity for businesses looking to avoid high sunk costs in setting up infrastructure or, in phasing out legacy infrastructure components. Businesses of all shapes and sizes have realized the potential of cloud computing and have either already moved the whole or part of their operations to the cloud already or are in the process of migrating.

But the cloud is a shared resource and identity management, privacy and access control will always remain areas of concern for cloud-based businesses. Managing security for vulnerabilities throughout your operations network has become a top concern for businesses, especially in the wake of COVID-19, remote work and anywhere operations. As more and more people become dependent on the web for their daily work without being physically located in the protective womb of a physical business network, vulnerabilities have risen concomitantly with highly complex attacks, such as, DDoS (distributed denial of service) and Level 7 (application layer) attacks.

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Organizations across the globe have quickly moved to a fast-digital transformation to allow a remote workforce model due to the global pandemic. That has naturally resulted in a multi-fold rise in the IT attack surface of a company. 

That’s why security leaders should consider the added risks carried by the remote workforce as well as their personal devices, which aren’t in the purview of the company’s security measures. This post aims to present you with information about which risks you might be exposed to. Are you ready? Then let’s jump in! 

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