Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Endpoint

10/13/2016
04:25 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Most Small Businesses Lack Response Plan For Hacks

Half of small business owners have experienced malware, phishing, Trojans, hacking, and unauthorized access to customer data, according to Nationwide survey.

Nearly 80 percent of small-business (SMB) owners don't have a cyberattack response plan, even though more than half were victim to at least one type of cyberattack over the past year, according to Nationwide's Small Business Indicator survey.

About 60% of those who did experience a cyberattack said it took longer than a month to recover. By contrast, of those who have not encountered a cyberattack, more than half (57%) think their company could recover within a month, according to the survey.

The national survey was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Nationwide from June 10-23 2016, among 502 US small-business owners with fewer than 300 employees.

“Small businesses are not prepared for cyber events because pretty much all they are seeing in headlines are large corporations,” says Karen Johnston, casualty technical consultant for commercial staff underwriting at Nationwide. That gives them a false sense of security because they think that cybercriminals only attack large corporations. SMBs might think they don’t have information cybercriminals would want, but that is far from the truth, she notes.

“Small business owners accept credit card payments, collect personal information from employees and customers, have websites, and do online banking. All of these activities create opportunities for cyber criminals to obtain the information they are looking for,” Johnston says.

Improving cybersecurity for America’s 28 million small businesses has been a top priority for the House Small Business Committee, which held hearings in April and July 2016 that featured testimony from cybersecurity experts and small business owners about the threat.  In September, the House passed bipartisan legislation, the Improving Small Business Cyber Security Act of 2016, which gives small businesses access to additional tools, resources, and expertise to help protect their sensitive electronic data from cyber threats.

“The reality is small businesses have fewer resources to invest in proper data protection and security controls; that definitely makes them an attractive target than larger corporations,” Johnston says.

According to the Nationwide survey, 45% of small-business owners who do not have a cyberattack response plan in place said they don't feel their company will be affected by a cyberattack (compared to 40% last year).

Still, the majority of respondents (68%) are at least somewhat concerned about a potential cyberattack affecting their business. Fifty-four percent of the businesses were victim to at least one type of the following attacks:

  • Computer virus (37%)
  • Phishing (20%)
  • Trojan horse (15%)
  • Hacking (11%)
  • Unauthorized access to customer information (7%)
  • Unauthorized access to company information (7%)
  • Issues due to unpatched software (6%)
  • Data breach (6%)
  • Ransomware (4%)

Nationwide recommends that small-business owners protect their organizations by incorporating the following procedures:

  • Guard your physical perimeter to prevent hackers from accessing sensitive data and your company’s computer network;
  • Educate your employees about cyber awareness;
  • Activate your firewall;
  • Install and regularly update antivirus, malware and spyware software;
  • Use strong passwords of 8-10 characters that include letters, numbers, and special characters and update them regularly;
  • Secure your Wi-Fi networks;
  • Set social media profiles to private and check your settings;
  • Encrypt your sensitive data, make a back-up and store it in a fire-proof safe off-site;
  • Carefully select online computing services;
  • Acquire cyber insurance to cover losses in the event of fraud or breaches.

Interestingly, the survey respondents included 190 Millennials (ages 18-35), 152 Gen Xers (ages 36-50), and 106 Baby Boomers (ages 51-65). Millennial small-business owners are seemingly the most concerned generation in recent history when it comes to preparing for the future.  More Millennials have a written cyberattack response plan in place (42%, versus Gen X (17%) or Baby Boomers (12%), according to a Nationwide survey of Millennials.

Related Content:

Rutrell Yasin has more than 30 years of experience writing about the application of information technology in business and government. He has witnessed all of the major transformations in computing over the last three decades, covering the rise, death, and resurrection of the ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Oldest First  |  Newest First  |  Threaded View
antivirussupport12
50%
50%
antivirussupport12,
User Rank: Strategist
3/12/2018 | 5:12:48 PM
Avira Antivirus Support
Avira antivirus is most featured, free and easy to install and use antivirus.This is not like another antivirus 

Avira antivirus support is totally different as it offers features such as Online resolving of threats and it has virus definition getting updated regularly so new malware which are hitting the market will not affect your system.
10 Ways to Keep a Rogue RasPi From Wrecking Your Network
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  7/10/2019
The Security of Cloud Applications
Hillel Solow, CTO and Co-founder, Protego,  7/11/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Building and Managing an IT Security Operations Program
As cyber threats grow, many organizations are building security operations centers (SOCs) to improve their defenses. In this Tech Digest you will learn tips on how to get the most out of a SOC in your organization - and what to do if you can't afford to build one.
Flash Poll
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
Your enterprise's cyber risk may depend upon the relationship between the IT team and the security team. Heres some insight on what's working and what isn't in the data center.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-0234
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-15
A Reflected Cross-site Scripting (XSS) vulnerability exists in Apache Roller. Roller's Math Comment Authenticator did not property sanitize user input and could be exploited to perform Reflected Cross Site Scripting (XSS). The mitigation for this vulnerability is to upgrade to the latest version of ...
CVE-2018-7838
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-15
A CWE-119 Buffer Errors vulnerability exists in Modicon M580 CPU - BMEP582040, all versions before V2.90, and Modicon Ethernet Module BMENOC0301, all versions before V2.16, which could cause denial of service on the FTP service of the controller or the Ethernet BMENOC module when it receives a FTP C...
CVE-2019-6822
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-15
A Use After Free: CWE-416 vulnerability exists in Zelio Soft 2, V5.2 and earlier, which could cause remote code execution when opening a specially crafted Zelio Soft 2 project file.
CVE-2019-6823
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-15
A CWE-94: Code Injection vulnerability exists in ProClima (all versions prior to version 8.0.0) which could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on the targeted system in all versions of ProClima prior to version 8.0.0.
CVE-2019-6824
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-15
A CWE-119: Buffer Errors vulnerability exists in ProClima (all versions prior to version 8.0.0) which allows an unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on the targeted system in all versions of ProClima prior to version 8.0.0.