The Three Biggest IT Security Threats to Small Businesses Right Now

The Three Biggest IT Security Threats to Small Businesses Right Now

Cybercrime doesn’t just effect large corporations. Small businesses are equally vulnerable to IT security threats. And they’re usually much less prepared to deal with it. Take a look at the three biggest threats to your small business that could be happening right now.

In 2016, cyber attacks cost businesses more than $1.3 billion. And that was just the attacks that were reported.

Cybercrime is big business in itself, and for the criminals, there is far more money to be made attacking businesses than individuals. Worryingly, small businesses are finding themselves just as much at risk as large corporations.

It seems that as soon as one method of attack is neutralized, another springs up to take its place. With the threats always changing it’s hard to keep track of what to defend against.

So read on as we give you the heads up on the three biggest IT security threats facing small businesses right now.

1. Ransomware

Ransomware is a form of malware that can be incredibly damaging to your business.

Ransomware works by installing itself on a computer and then encrypting all of the data on that computer, rendering it unusable. The ransomware will then ask for a payment of cryptocurrency in order to unencrypt the data so that the computer can be used again.

In 2017, ransomware called Wannacry infected around 200,000 computers worldwide. One of the biggest agencies to be impacted by this ransomware was the National Health Service in the UK. As many as 70,000 devices may have been affected. This included computers, MRI scanners, and operating room equipment.

With data so important to all businesses, the idea of losing it all is almost unthinkable. Ransomware is a serious risk to your business and one that needs protecting against.

2. Cryptocurrency Mining Malware

One of the latest cyber threats in recent months has been the big increase in cryptocurrency mining malware.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can be “mined” by people who allow their computer’s processing power to be used to verify transactions. In exchange for allowing the use of this processing power, the user receives fractions of Bitcoins in compensation.

Whilst most miners make use of their own equipment to do this, cybercriminals are now beginning to use malware to get other people’s computer hardware to do the mining for them. This will often happen without the owner’s knowledge.

Unfortunately for businesses, if this malware does infect your computer, it will drastically slow down your hardware as nearly all of the processing power is put to the cybercriminals’ use.

This is one of the fastest growing threats and is something that your business must guard against.

3. Internet of Things Devices

Smart devices are becoming a huge industry. But they also pose a huge risk.

The internet of things refers to smart devices such as smart plugs and smart thermostats. These connect to the internet to provide much of their functionality.

The risk is that these devices normally have very little security protection, and are often using the default passwords. If a cybercriminal can access an Internet of Things device in your business, it may allow them access to your entire network. At which point you are under serious threat.

As the phrase goes, a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, and when it comes to small business cybersecurity, smart devices are almost always the weakest link.

IT Security Threats Need a Smart Solution

If you’re a small business, you should be very concerned about the risk that these IT security threats pose to your business.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are ways to fight back against the cybercriminals. We offer a whole range of managed IT solutions, including security solutions that can keep you safe from digital threats.

If you would like to know more about the services we offer, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.