In late 2019, CNBC.com reported that cyberattacks now cost businesses of all sizes about $200,000 per incident, on average, according to a report from cyber insurance provider Hiscox.
This represents a dramatic increase in the average cost of a data breach in 2019, especially for a small to midsize business (SMBs). Earlier reports suggested costs of $117,000 per incident back in 2017.
There is little doubt that the cost of cybercrime continues to climb. Additionally, more businesses than ever before reported breaches in 2019. That same Hiscox report notes that the number of companies reporting cyber incidents rose from 45% in 2018 to 61% in 2019.
Cyberattacks Are a Sure Thing For Small Businesses
According to former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, we are engaged in an all-out cyberwar. Whether or not you agree with him, your small business is absolutely at risk.
In fact, 58% of cyberattack victims were small businesses in 2018, according to research from Verizon. (This is just one of the reasons why your business needs good antivirus protection software).
That number will likely be even higher for 2019, as cybercriminals have shown a clear preference for attacking small businesses over individuals or large organizations. After all, small businesses are a more lucrative target than individuals, and unlike big corporations, they don’t often have sophisticated security in place.
Don’t Have Comprehensive Cybersecurity in Place? You May Lose Your Business
Here’s another sad and scary fact: sixty percent of small businesses shut their doors within six months of being victimized by a cyberattack, according to a 2018 Inc.com article.
Even more unfortunate is the fact that 62% of 1,377 surveyed small business CEOs said that their firms do not have an up-to-date or active cybersecurity strategy in place. Many reported having no strategy at all. While this means that these businesses may have some patchwork cybersecurity tactics working for them—basic antivirus programs installed on individual computers, for instance—they have not comprehensively assessed their risks and taken steps to correct network security vulnerabilities.
Perhaps these CEOs do not realize that they could certainly lose their business over a breach, which is why news outlets and responsible IT service providers like us here at EZComputer Solutions continue to sound the alarm bells.
How Can You Reduce Your Business’s Risk of a Data Breach?
The CNBC article also provides a long list of both “high and low-tech strategies” for preventing a so-called cyber incident in your small business. These include many we’ve discussed in our previous blog posts about cybersecurity, too, such as:
- Practicing good password hygiene
- Making regular backups of all your most critical business data
- Limiting employee access to just the data and resources they need to do their individual jobs
- Investing in cybersecurity training for all members of your team
Of course, one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to secure your business network is to work with an experienced IT managed services provider (MSP). These contracted resources will help you assess your risks and establish plans to mitigate those risks.
Research suggests that 95% of the data breaches that happened last year—to both small and large businesses—were preventable with better cybersecurity strategies and tactics in place. If you’re unsure whether your Central PA small business is vulnerable to these increasingly expensive cyberattacks, we invite you to get in touch with EZComputer Solutions now to learn more.