Why Cybersecurity is a Business Concern
It seems like every day now, we hear about a new hack. But the problem is not just technology. It’s also a business problem that everyone needs to understand and address. And it affects every business in some way or another.
I personally believe it’s because of the word itself, cybersecurity. It sounds technical, it involves technology, so it must be 100% an IT issue to fix. Let’s walk through a quick scenario and see who fits into each point:
- Finance: sets up a login for their bank account.
- IT: provides security awareness training so that finance knows to create a secure password and enables MFA.
- IT: follows up with finance to make sure that everything was enabled.
However, there’s no way for IT to enforce anything that finance does on their bank account page. They could remove MFA right away (if the bank allows it).
Even with such a simple example, you can see that this involves both IT and finance cooperation.
Cybersecurity is not just a technology problem. Every business has a cybersecurity problem, whether it knows it or not.
Businesses need to have a cybersecurity strategy in place and be able to:
- identify risks,
- protect data and systems from attack,
- prevent breaches from happening in the first place
- and respond quickly if a breach occurs.
In addition to having an effective strategy for protecting your business from cyber threats, you also need to train employees so they know how to recognize suspicious activity on their devices and report any suspicious activity immediately.
Every company needs an effective way of communicating about security issues with third-party partners like vendors or suppliers who may be vulnerable themselves.
Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts your data and demands payment to unlock it. It can be installed on your computer by clicking on a link in a phishing email, or by visiting a website that has been compromised.
Ransomware is one of the most common types of cyberattacks today because it’s easy for hackers to use — just send an email with malicious code attached. If you don’t pay up within 72 hours, however, there isn’t much anyone can do beyond restoring their files from backups or buying new ones (which may not be cheap).
Hackers could compromise your customer’s credit card information.
IT can’t control if someone takes a credit card over the phone and writes it down or sends it as a message/email. Hackers can steal credit card information and sell it on the dark web for someone else to use. They can also use that information themselves using your customers’ information as identification.
When someone hacks a business and steals credit card information, that’s bad enough. But when they steal personal information like Social Security numbers or medical records, they can sell that data to the highest bidder — and it isn’t just identity thieves who will pay top dollar.
Criminal organizations can use stolen data to commit fraud, scams and money laundering schemes that target both individuals and companies alike.
It’s happening every day, to businesses small and large, and to companies in every industry.
We’re in the midst of a cybersecurity crisis, one that’s happening every day, all over the world, to businesses of all sizes. And it’s not just an IT problem — it’s an industry-wide issue.
It’s no secret that hacking is big business: according to one recent report by security firm McAfee, “cybercrime costs the world economy more than $1 trillion, or just more than one percent of global GDP, which is up more than 50 percent from a 2018 study that put global losses at close to $600 billion.”
But it might surprise you how widespread these attacks are: they’ve affected companies from every industry imaginable. Some industries are just more likely to be hacked, but everyone is at risk.
And the cost is growing fast. Criminals will make more money from stealing data than from selling drugs.
Cybercrime is now a 1 trillion-a-year global business. And the cost is growing fast. According to CyberCrime Magazine, cybercrime will reach “$10.5 trillion USD annually by 2025.” It will be “more profitable than the global trade of all major illegal drugs combined.”
The cybersecurity industry has grown dramatically since it was first popularized in the early 2000s.
Hacking is a big business, and everyone in your company should understand how even small mistakes can cost dearly.
Cybersecurity is a big problem for everyone in your business, but it can be particularly difficult for small businesses. How can you help protect your company from Cybercrime?
- Everyone has a cybersecurity problem. Even if you don’t have an IT department or someone who understands cybersecurity well enough to keep your systems safe from attackers, there are still ways that hackers could compromise the integrity of everything you do online. Hackers won’t stop until they’ve gained access to every part of your organization’s infrastructure (including email and websites). A simple mistake could cost the company big time when hackers decide they’re ready to take over everything.
- Smaller companies often struggle with understanding what constitutes good practice when it comes to cybersecurity best practices. In fact, many smaller businesses don’t understand what constitutes bad practice at all — and this can lead them down some dangerous paths when dealing with their own data security needs.
- In order to protect your company from cybercrime, you’ll need to know how hackers work and what they look for when they’re trying to gain access to a company’s systems. Once you understand the basics of cybersecurity best practices, it will be much easier for you , and your staff, to keep data safe from hackers.
- Ensure that all systems are up-to-date and patched regularly.
- Make sure passwords are strong and unique across all accounts.
- Don’t use shared passwords for important accounts like email. Use different passwords for each system.
- Use two-factor authentication when possible (this will make it harder for hackers to break into your accounts)
Cybersecurity is not just an IT problem. It’s a business problem that needs to be treated as such. If your company isn’t up to date on cybersecurity, it will eventually be exploited by hackers who know how much money they can make from stealing customer data. This is why I’ve been writing about this topic so much lately; I hope I’ve given you some ideas on how you can protect yourself against these types of attacks. If nothing else, at least now you know what kind of things might happen if there was a breach in your system.