Cybersecurity Emerges as Top Priority: How You Can Prepare

While this blog won’t be focusing specifically on the pandemic, it’s worth noting that cybercrimes have jumped 300% since the onset of COVID-19.

Then consider that 43% of cyberattacks target smaller organizations, of which nearly half have no grasp of how to protect themselves.

Something must change.

Business leaders must educate themselves and their employees on cybersecurity trends and take actionable steps to mitigation risk. This blog will explore a variety of topics that can all help reduce your chances of experiencing a cyberattack. 

Password Strength is a Growing Issue

Protecting our businesses from data breaches and ransomware attacks is becoming increasingly difficult.

Employees must be hypervigilant and remain tuned into these risks. Unfortunately, results from studies are showing otherwise. 60% of surveyed small businesses cite employee/contractor negligence as the root cause of a breach. This number is compared to only 37% of infractions resulting from external hacking.

One critical example of negligence is the use of weak passwords. It’s the year 2020, and many of us are still relying on things like our children’s names, birth years, and the classic “12345.”

The result? 40% of survey respondents said there was a breach of an employee’s password over the past 12 months.

These occurrences can debilitate a smaller company, especially considering that the average cost of a password breach is nearly $400,000.

First and foremost, businesses must learn about the causes of data breaches. The fact that 32% of companies couldn’t figure out what led to these attacks is concerning.

The Need to Manage Passwords

68% of surveyed small businesses claimed their most significant point of contention was stolen or compromised passwords. Whereas 67% of respondents identified the use of weak passwords as their pressing issue.

Consider this, 74% of small businesses said that password managers weren’t a requirement. Over 50% of that number relies on human memory and spreadsheets to protect those passwords.

The fact is that password managers are pivotal for businesses of all shapes and sizes.

Smaller companies are just as vulnerable and as big of targets as massive corporations when it comes to these kinds of threats. Management technology generates complicated passwords, usually switching them incrementally. Beyond that, this kind of software encrypts, stores, and protects credentials from ever being found by malicious cybercriminals.

Failing to Make Cybersecurity a Legitimate Priority

There’s no doubt that small businesses don’t always have the benefit of resources. This notion rings doubly true when holding budgets and manpower side by side with larger organizations.

Further illustrating this issue is how 74% of survey respondents said they lack the people, while 55% cited budgetary problems as their main cybersecurity obstacles.

It shouldn’t be much of a surprise that smaller organizations finding the most success with offsetting cybercrimes possess the necessary funds. They also have people in their workforce with considerable knowledge in the cybersecurity space.

The companies that find success with attack prevention also allocate their budget toward cybersecurity.

We can’t say for 100% sure, but the organizations with better cyber defense might have the same amount of money as those struggling. Where the differences occur are with how those funds are being distributed.

It’s Time to Place Emphasis on Cybersecurity

In 2020, cybercriminals are only getting more intelligent and savvier. Business leaders won’t do themselves any favors by trying to ignore this problem until it goes away.

Now is the time to assess your budget and implement a comprehensive list of cybersecurity best practices for the workplace. However, without the necessary expertise in a given organization, establishing such a strategy can be difficult. In this instance, it’d be wise to partner with a company that can help educate teams and bolster overall cybersecurity efforts.