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The Importance of Cyber Security for Your Small to Medium-Size Business

The internet has virtually shrunk the world into a global village, making it possible to communicate with anyone from any corner of the world. Every other aspect of our lives have understandably moved to the internet from connecting with friends to paying utility bills and even carrying out or respective businesses. More than 80 percent of small and medium-sized businesses have some sort of internet presence. With more and more people going online, it has created a ripe environment for businesses to thrive regardless of their location. Small and medium-sized businesses have been able to reap the benefits of utilizing social media, staff emails, online shopping as well as online banking.

With this new technology has also come new ways in which small and medium-sized businesses could be attacked and the main way this happens is through cyber-attack. A cyber-attack is where your business’ online presence is breached through hacking, theft of financial information and theft of personal data. There are many ways in which a cyber-attack can take place, it can happen through the help of a computer virus, phishing etc. and is very common in businesses that hold their personal and important data on their platforms as well as those that allow their staff to access their platforms using personal devices.

“This is particularly devasting when a business owner is in the process of selling a business and the data needed for the transfer is not consistent anymore, says Achim Neumann, President of A Neumann & Associates, LLC, a leading Mergers and Acquisition firm headquartered in New Jersey.”

This problem is not only experienced by mainstream companies, small and medium-sized businesses also are at risk of falling into this trap. At best a hacking attack could lead you to not have a properly working device or platform for a few days and at worst it could lead to significant financial losses, ruined reputations and prevent you from making money via your online platforms.

Countering cyber attacks

The main way of ensuring you do not come under this threat is employing the appropriate cyber security for your small and medium-sized business. This is important because:

  • Protects your business from a data breach

One of the main ways in which cyber-attacks take place is through a data breach. All businesses with an online presence hold a range of data on these platforms. Some of these data are sensitive and could easily come under threat of leaking if the business does not take the necessary steps in protecting themselves.

The first step to data protection is limiting the type of data that can be accessed via the public domain. The second step is to set up a dummy email account which you can use to sign in to sites or services you don’t want knowing your real email address. The added benefit of this is you can set up your dummy account to forward any replies you get from the sites and services you signed on using it to your real email account.

  • Protects from ransomware

This is another type of cyber-attack which encrypts the data found in your platforms and the business is forced to part with an amount of money to have the data decrypted. This type of attack has not only taken place for computers but even for cloud services.

Protection from ransomware includes ensuring your business data is backed up in a variety of places including cloud, hard drive etc. small and medium-sized businesses should also ensure they carry out frequent antivirus updates as well as invest in ransomware protection software. Note that these are two different software.

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