Data Breaches are rising at an alarming rate. This is evident in the increasing reports of data breaches in the news. Whilst it is the larger companies that get the media spotlight, the harsh reality is that data breaches are having the highest impact on the SME market
A recent study has shown that when comparing the first few months of 2018 and 2019, total data breaches have gone up by 56.4%. The costs of these breaches are also significantly increasing. A study from IBM specifies that “The cost of a data breach has risen 12% over the past five years to £3.2m on average globally, with a 10.56% increase in the UK in the past year alone to £2.99m on average”
Whilst most of the news coverage focuses on the data breaches happening to larger companies, “60 percent of targeted attacks impact small-to-medium sized organisations”
What does this mean for your business?
To put it simply, businesses today are at further risk of data breaches, especially those who continue to delay implementation of a concrete security and data protection solution. Whilst your business may not suffer the same media consequences, reputational damage still poses a large risk; customers increasingly seek reassurance that their data is safe in your hands.
Not to mention that for small-to-medium sized businesses, the financial impact can be crippling. After a data breach it can be extremely challenging for SMB’s to recover and in many cases, this will result in the closure of a business. In fact, “a staggering 60% of small businesses hit with a cyber-attack or data breach go out of business within 6 months.”
What should businesses do?
If you are yet to take any action in regards to network security and data protection, this should be of upmost priority for your business. The first steps to showing due diligence in this area would include:
- Producing security policies and guidelines to outline how you plan on taking action should a data breach occur and what your business continuity strategy looks like.
- Review your existing infrastructure. Older technology and software will put your business in further risk, upgrading will eliminate this being a threat. Note that Windows 7 will be end of life as of Jan 2020!
- Test your plans to better identify any areas of weakness that require improvement
- Educate your team. Especially those who handle data; they need to be aware of the aforementioned security policies Regular training should take place to ensure Latest cyber threat awareness
The above outlines some initial first step to better ensure security of your data and the data of your customers. Sweethaven are here to help; we are offering a free consultation meeting in which we can analyse your existing data protection security solution and identify areas of weakness to establish improvements to ensure you are best protected.