Navigating the most popular technology trends of 2019, we understand that the central point of concern among experts has been Cybersecurity. With 2020 only a blink away, it is safe to assume that innovation and research in the domain of cybersecurity are still going to be a top priority. As newer technologies like AI, IoT, 5G networks and cloud computing are making their way into the public market, it is becoming more difficult for security analysts to keep up with the growing sophistication of malicious threats that can intrude into networks and systems, stealing data and destroying crucial information.
Why is cybersecurity more important to small businesses than it is to large-scale enterprises?
According to industry statistics, 43% of cyber-attacks in 2019 affected small businesses. Only 14% of such businesses had the ability to mitigate risks due to these vulnerabilities. It has been noted that 60% of small businesses had to close up shop within 6 months of facing a cyber-attack.
Cybersecurity threats for small businesses are at an all-time high. The reason is three-fold:
- Lack of knowledge: Small businesses are reluctant to invest in such security platforms due to the lack of enough knowledge about the importance of cybersecurity in this age of the internet. The open reluctance of small business owners to adopt solutions to cybersecurity threats makes them vulnerable to malicious cyber entities.
- Affordability issues: In most cases, cybersecurity for small business is affected due to the lack of funds and infrastructure. For most young companies, being able to afford state-of-the-art cybersecurity solutions is a pipe dream. So, as threat entities are becoming increasingly sophisticated, the security systems are remaining redundant.
- Business operations outside internal security network: Many small businesses tend to partner with third-party vendors and hire outsourcing firms to help them grow and scale their business. This practice increases the risk of a security incident as business communications need to be performed outside the internal security infrastructure of the company. This exposure can compromise the entire security architecture of the business, leaving it vulnerable to malicious threats.
Solutions to Cybersecurity Threats
To help businesses eliminate the growing onslaught of malicious threats, most enterprise CISOs are generously embracing solutions to cybersecurity threats irrespective of the amount of investment needed.
Most enterprises spend a fortune investing in solutions for cybersecurity threats. But expensive solutions do not necessarily mean that they are effective. Cybersecurity for enterprise is important because the vast amount of data stored in its network and systems is worth millions of dollars. From employee data to financial information, these data give enough intent to malicious entities to design programs that can invade even the most robust cybersecurity frameworks.
According to estimates, 65% of enterprises prioritize the security of data while 60% of small businesses focus majorly on endpoint protection. This means enterprises understand the importance of having visibility into their structured data whereas SMBs are more inclined towards strengthening their perimeter defense.
Security Strategies to Address Cyber Security Threats for Small Businesses and Enterprises:
Cybersecurity for Small Business - Best Practices:
- Establish a Firewall - The first line of defense when it comes to cybersecurity, is setting up a firewall. Many small businesses are starting to install internal firewalls along with the practice of setting up only an external firewall for an additional layer of security. Companies should also consider the installation of home firewall networks for employees working from home.
- Educate Employees to Ensure Safe Password Practices - Cybersecurity threats for small businesses can also arise because of human error. Educating your employees about the best cybersecurity practices and safe password hacks can prove to be useful as over 63% of data breaches happen due to weak, lost and stole passwords.
- Cybersecurity Policy Documentation - Word of mouth is not enough when it comes to strengthening your business security architecture. The concept of cybersecurity for small business can be better implemented if proper documentation is maintained. This helps businesses create a protocol that can be followed in the future when similar threats arise.
Cybersecurity for Enterprise - Best Practices:
- Invest in Intelligent Security Tools - Security vendors are creating coming-of-age security tools for enterprises to protect their sensitive data better. Systems like the SOAR platform, SIEM tools and newer technologies like malware reverse engineering are bringing the much-needed edge to addressing security issues at enterprises. Cybersecurity for enterprise can be made stronger and robust with the help of such tools.
- Create Data Honey Pots - The term Honey Pots in cybersecurity refers to creating false areas of data to divert the attention of hackers. This acts as an alert system for the enterprise, letting them know of the danger they face. This tactic is also useful in sending a message to the hackers that the enterprise is prepared to mitigate or eliminate any malicious threats.
- Regularly Test Incident Response Systems - Although most enterprises have an incident response plan in place, they fail to protect their organizational systems from data breaches. With the increasing sophistication of threat entities, security systems should be tested regularly to ensure they are up-to-date and functional.
Here is how Enterprises can keep their incident response plans in check - How to test your incident response plan: Everything you need to know
With everything getting increasingly connected, it is of prime importance for businesses to understand and implement the best cybersecurity practices. While the methods of security implementation may be different for small businesses and bigger businesses, the crux of the solutions to cybersecurity threats remain the same -
- Educate your employees about the best password practices
- Implement the most up-to-date cybersecurity software
- Monitor and protect any and all devices that have the capability of connecting to the internet
- Keep external devices such as USBs on lockdown
Hackers depend largely on human error rather than software malfunctions. Cybersecurity practices for both small businesses and enterprises have to be routinely checked and updated in order to secure their systems with robust practices.
Read more about Enterprise Security - Enhancing Enterprise Security