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February 4, 2022 | By stephen

Why Cybersecurity Matters More Than Ever For SMBs in 2022

We live in the information age where technology is a do-or-die for businesses. Technology can help organizations improve business agility, enhance staff coordination and collaboration, automate production processes, increase revenue streams, and the list goes on and on. But with these benefits also comes one enormous challenge—the risk of cyberattacks. The bad news is that the threat is more severe now than ever. In this article, we discuss the reasons cybersecurity investment is crucial for your Chicagoland SMB.

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The Year 2020 Broke All Records With Data Lost in Breaches

In 2020, ABC News reported a 600% increase in cybercrimes. This year, Cybersecurity Ventures estimates that organizations globally get a new ransomware attack after every 11 seconds. All statistics indicate cyber actors are working overtime. But this may not be surprising news; cybercrimes have continually been soaring for most of the last decade. What’s worrying is how these attacks are getting more complex by the day:

  • Increase in state-backed cyber actors: Google has increasingly warned users of a surge in breach attempts from state-backed hacker groups. From APT28 to Charming Kitten, Cozy Bear, and Double Dragon, these hackers use sophisticated techniques, which are challenging to identify or foil. Google has sent over 50,000 alerts throughout this year alone, showing how serious the situation is.
  • Cyber attackers are camping more in target networks: There’s a disturbing trend of cyber actors hiding in target systems for weeks, or even months, before launching an attack. For instance, in the infamous SolarWinds hack, CSO online estimates that the hackers were in the tech firm’s systems nine months before the breach. During this dormancy period, they learn your network, communication patterns and mine all the data they need to launch the most sophisticated onslaught.
  • Backups are no longer safe: Initially, the bad guys primarily focused on accessing corporate systems and mining sensitive data. But, with the increase of ransomware, they now focus more on interrupting business operations by compromising backups. They know that you’re more likely to cooperate with them and pay ransoms without backups to sustain basic operations.

Most Cyber Attacks in the U.S. Target SMBs

For a long time, small and medium-sized businesses have believed that they are safer from cyberattacks because of their size. And that was partially true because cyber actors focused on larger organizations. But not anymore. A 2019 CNBC study estimates that SMBs account for over 43% of global cybersecurity incidents.

Keeper Security approximates that SMBs account for over 76% of all cyberattacks. And reasonably so—they provide an easier target because they may not afford the complex intrusion detection and prevention technologies that larger organizations have. Cyber incidents that hit the headlines may mislead you into thinking that the bad guys only go after large corporations. However, nobody is safe. And as we have demonstrated, your small or medium-sized Chicagoland business faces an even higher risk.

Over 60% of SMBs Die Within Six Months of a Breach

Data breaches are costly and are getting more expensive by the day. According to Verizon, 86% of data breaches are financially motivated. 9 out of 10 cyber-attacks seek to extort money from your business.

Based on statistics, the bad guys seem to do pretty well. In 2020, IBM approximated the average cost of a data breach to be $3.86 million. By any standard, a loss of this magnitude is enough to bring any SMB to its knees. Therefore, it’s accurate when Cybersecurity Ventures estimates that up to 60% of SMBs die within six months of undergoing a breach.

What’s the State of Your SMB’s Cybersecurity Readiness?

As we’ve demonstrated, SMBs have a lot to lose from hacks and breaches compared to larger corporations. Therefore, you need to take the greatest caution by investing more in cybersecurity. While over 58% of SMBs are aware and concerned about the risks of cyberattacks, Small Business Trends reports that a worrying 51% of them allocate no budget at all to cybersecurity.

We understand cybersecurity can be costly, especially when you manage everything internally. You can procure and update software and hardware, hire and remunerate IT leaders and specialists, continually retrain your IT staff, and the responsibilities seem endless. Probably that’s why most SMBs lag with cybersecurity investment.

Cybersecurity doesn’t have to be a financially overburdening venture. Find a reliable IT support company that’s customer-centered. They’ll give you access to all the state-of-the-art data security technologies and experienced experts at a fraction of what it’d cost you to manage everything in-house. Above all, investing in cybersecurity is not just about the money you budget to prevent hacks and breaches — it’s also about the money you save by reducing your exposure to these threats.

LeadingIT offers 24/7, all-inclusive, fast, and friendly technology and cybersecurity support for nonprofits, manufacturers, schools, accounting firms, religious organizations, government, and law offices with 10-200 employees across the Chicagoland area.

Do you need cybersecurity support to protect your business? Leave a message for us and we will get back to you right away.



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