As a managed IT services provider in Orange County, we consistently hear from business owners that they don’t need to be really concerned about cybersecurity because their business is too small for attackers to worry about. The truth is any business can be a target for a cyberattack, and everyone should be concerned about security. Even the smallest company or individual can be targeted by ransomware or other kinds of malware that can destroy vital information.
It is important to learn about how these attacks work so you can be sure to protect yourself and your company. Just in case you are still thinking your business won’t be a target, here are a few reasons why it can still be vulnerable to attacks.
They aren’t looking at your size
Unfortunately, most attackers aren’t concerned with how small your business is. They will target anyone they can find with a vulnerability. The attackers usually have software programs that can help them locate these vulnerabilities at companies on a massive scale. This means that no, they are not targeting such and such company specifically. They are scanning the internet for the specific vulnerability and using that to attack several companies at the same time.
In these cases they likely don’t even know how big or small your company is. Their only concern is that your data is important enough to you that you will pay them to get back up and running.
They target thousands of small transactions
Most attackers these days aren’t looking for that huge payday from a large corporation. They know that huge companies spend a lot of money on cybersecurity. Not only will it be more difficult to infiltrate such an organization, they also might find themselves in over their head with the resolution. Some kinds of malware require a different decryptor file for each computer. Generating those files will take them days to complete if they end up attacking a really large company.
Instead, they want to find thousands of smaller organizations to attack. The security is likely not nearly as robust, and the smaller transaction amounts make it easier for a small business to swallow. If thousands of companies pay $80 to decrypt a machine that is hit with ransomware, they might just quickly pay it to get their business back up and running as quickly as possible. That money ends up adding to quite a big payday when it is spread over so many companies at once.
Employees aren’t as well trained
Large organizations generally employ cybersecurity awareness training that employees must attend or be tested regularly. Many small businesses don’t have the time or money to invest in the training. Attackers know this and will use social engineering to target employees at small organizations. The attacker might glean the information they can find through social platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn to send more targeted attacks that have a higher likelihood of return.
When an email comes from someone with their boss’ name that has an urgent request for the person, they might not think twice about responding. This is why these types of attacks are so successful. With awareness training, employees can spot these fraudulent or malicious requests a little easier, and do something about it before they end up a victim.
Even with awareness training out of the picture, small businesses are much easier targets for social engineering attacks since it could be much easier to find information about the employees at the company and what the hierarchy of the company appears to be.
Given all these examples, small businesses are actually more at risk for a cyber security attack than a large corporation. Make sure you are protecting yourself through proper management of your IT Services.