The threat of cyberattacks is real and ever-concerning. These disruptions have the potential to devastate personal lives, businesses and organizations. This isn’t the first article you have read about cyberattacks and it won’t be the last. If it’s happened to you or someone you know then—you know. If not, then an incident can feel distant and unlikely, like being struck by lighting. In this post, I’d like to make it feel reel to provide some momentum for you to fortify against exposure in your business and personal life. Let’s explore some worst-case scenarios.
Imagine waking up one morning to find that your bank account has been drained of all its funds. You try to log in, but your credentials no longer work. Frantic, you call your bank only to find out that you have been the victim of a cyberattack. Now it’s personal.
But the consequences of cyberattacks extend far beyond the individual level. In 2017, a cyberattack on the shipping giant Maersk caused an estimated $300 million in damages. The attack not only disrupted the company’s operations but also caused widespread disruption in global shipping, leading to significant economic losses.
Small businesses like yours are particularly vulnerable to cyberattacks often due to limited resources and a lack of dedicated IT personnel. In fact, according to a recent report, 43% of all cyberattacks target small businesses.
Imagine your business is the victim of a ransomware attack where hackers gain access to your company’s systems and encrypt all of your data, effectively locking you out of your own systems. Then the hackers demand a ransom payment in exchange for the decryption key. What would you do? If you are unable to pay the ransom or restore your business data from backups, you may lose it permanently. How would this devastate your operations and reputation?
Or consider a data breach. If your business stores sensitive customer or employee data, such as credit card information or social security numbers, a data breach could lead to financial losses and again damage to your company’s reputation. There could be legal action, fines, and loss of customer trust.
Attacks on your business’s website will likely result in downtime, loss of sales or failure to complete other critical operations. Yet again, we’re looking at lost revenue and damage to reputation.
It’s important for your businesses to audit safeguards and take ongoing proactive steps to protect your company from cyberattacks. It’s also important to not panic. Consider partnering with a Managed Services Provider. An IT partner makes it their business to be current in the world of cyber threats. Safety considerations should include:
- Implementing strong security protocols
- Investing in cybersecurity infrastructure
- Training employees on cybersecurity best practices
- Regularly backing up data
- Investing in cybersecurity tools such as firewalls and antivirus software
By taking these steps and maintaining current safeguards, you will protect yourself, your business and your customer.