Why Hackers Love SMBS
It’s not just faceless multinationals that suffer the indignity of attacks from hackers. If anything their keen awareness of the risks – and their robust cybersecurity safeguards – make them much more difficult to attack with malware, ransomware, network eavesdropping, etc – not to mention all manner of viruses.
Small and medium businesses (SMBs) however, are much easier targets for hackers. But why is this the case? Surely they wouldn’t bother when the pickings are so slim compared to bigger enterprises?
Let’s consider ‘why’ more closely.
As much as we hate to admit it (being IT and small business advocates), the reality is that SMBs aren’t all that security conscious when it comes to their networks, systems, and data.
In addition to having less sophisticated anti-virus protection, SMBs are more likely to have weaker cloud encryption software too.
All of this doesn’t necessarily mean that SMBs don’t see the importance of security; just that they don’t always consider what they do – or the data they hold – as particularly ‘hack-worthy’ for the most part.
But – wherever there’s data, there’s an asset to exploit: at least from a hacker’s perspective. Address details, transaction records, and (of course), financial information all have a market for those of a criminal inclination.
No In-House Expertise
Larger companies will have swarms – entire departments – dedicated to IT. And a good few of them will be cybersecurity experts.
However, in smaller businesses, the person in charge of IT is usually either the office manager, the CEO, or the youngest – and therefore (assumed to be) the most IT-literate – employee.
Few – if any – of these employees will have the knowledge or expertise needed to mitigate the risk of hacking. That’s why a lot of smaller companies will turn to Managed Services Providers; effectively outsourcing everything from cloud migration to access management.
Profit – Not Profile
All things considered, hacking numerous small businesses is just as profitable as hacking a single large one.
However the reality is, no company can ever truly be safe from hacking. High profile data breaches often make newspaper headlines – each one seemingly more outlandish from the last.
Bigger companies tend to bounce back quite quickly though. Conversely, according to research from The National Cyber Security Alliance, some 60 percent of small companies are unable to sustain their businesses more than six months after a cyber attack.
Ultimately, the better SMBs understand security and the more measures they put in place they harder they make it for hackers – and the more likely they’ll be to leave them alone. At least for the time being.