Cybersecurity Statistics Every Small Business Should Know

Cybersecurity Statistics Every Small Business Should Know | CyberDot

As a small business owner, you should always be aware of cybersecurity threats that can put your company at risk. For many, the threat of cyberattacks is hard to imagine, but statistics can help put it into perspective. Keeping the following cybersecurity statistics in the back of your mind can help you remember some of the largest threats to your small business – and take action to prevent them.

Cybersecurity Statistics You Need to Know

The Cost of Cyber Attacks

According to the Ponemon 2017 State of Cybersecurity in SMBs, cyber attacks to small and medium businesses in 2017 cost an average of $2,235,000 for each company. This statistic is related to cyber attacks due to malware, with $1,207,965 accounting for disruption to the regular business operations and $1,027,053 to direct theft or damage of IT assets. Some predict that by the year 2021, the world will pay $6 trillion each year due to cybercrime.

To prevent your company from experiencing huge losses due to cyberattacks, create your cybersecurity policy now. Remember that if you have cyber insurance, you will not directly lose this much money as the insurance would cover the vast majority, if not all. This allows your company to bounce back.

How Many Attacks Target Small Businesses

Many small business owners are under the mistaken belief that cybercriminals will not target them because the potential for gains is so much lower than with a large or even medium business. In reality, however, 43 percent of all cyber criminals choose small businesses as their targets. You should never assume that your company is too small to be a target of attacks. Cybercriminals want you to feel this way so you do not put up a strong line of defense, but all companies, regardless of size, should take measures to prevent cyberattacks and have a plan in place of what to do if one occurs.

You may feel that you do not store any data that is valuable to a cybercriminal. This is also a misconception as cybercriminals would love to get their hands on information such as email addresses, phone numbers, and billing addresses. This data is stored by 68, 64, and 54 percent of small businesses, respectively; more than likely you have data cybercriminals want.

According to data from Symantec, in terms of overall attacks, the number of ransomware attacks increased by a whopping 36 percent in 2017 and included over 100 new families of malware. With the threat of attack growing, it becomes more important than ever to take action to protect your small business.

How Many Small Businesses Cannot Recover

Many small businesses without cyber insurance simply cannot recover from an expensive cyberattack; the same would be true of recovering from natural disasters without insurance. Specifically, 60 percent of small businesses will go out of business due to inability to recover within six months of experiencing a cyberattack. Having a support network via insurance can reduce your risk of joining that statistic.

What Causes Data Security Breaches?

As a small business, it is also a smart choice to be aware of statistics regarding security breach causes, so you know which areas require the most prevention. 48 percent of all data security breaches occur due to acts involving malicious intent. The rest of the cases are due to system failure or human error.

You can easily minimize the risk of breaches due to human error by ensuring that you have proper policies in place and train your employees on best practices. Examples include never opening suspicious emails or clicking on links or attachments unless they are positive that the sender is someone they know. In fact, 92.4 percent of all malware gets delivered via email. So ensuring your employees know the security risks should be one of your first steps towards providing malware protection.

Are Small Businesses Protected?

Some small businesses have plenty of protection in place against cyberattacks, while others have almost none. The vast majority, however, are unprepared to counter an attack. Just 38 percent of small businesses regularly upgrade their software solutions. (Something which ensures any vulnerabilities are repaired to prevent hackers from accessing an easy entry point.) Only 31 percent of small businesses monitor their business credit reports. Which means they may not be aware of an attack right away. Just 22 percent of small businesses encrypt their databases. This means that as soon as hackers get access to the database, they can read the information.

Even small businesses that have taken steps to provide some element of cybersecurity do not do enough. Sixteen percent of small businesses said they only reviewed cybersecurity policies after an attack. While attacks are one way to pinpoint your weaknesses, it is much smarter to assess cybersecurity policies beforehand.

Among companies with password policies, 65 percent of businesses do not strictly enforce those policies. Remember that without a strict password policy, hackers will find accessing your company’s data to be incredibly easy. Check out our 8 Tips for Creating the Perfect Password for additional information. 

Cyber Insurance Can Protect You from the Threats

In addition to developing your own cybersecurity practices, consider getting help from a cybersecurity company. They will minimize your threat level of facing a cyber attack. They will also provide protection to minimize the severity of the attack and help your company recover if one does occur.

While the cybersecurity landscape is scary for small businesses, you do not necessarily need to join the statistics. By being aware of these statistics, you are likely to create a strong cybersecurity policy that will keep your data and profits safe.