We live in an amazing age, full of technology that allows us to do so many things unimaginable just a short time ago. But there’s a downside to all that cool tech. Every tool, every connection to the internet can leave you and your business open to cyberattacks and cyber-terrorism. But you can take a few added steps to beef up your cybersecurity to protect your business.

We’ve seen in the news how millions of people can be affected when one cyberattack hits an industry. I can still feel the sting of the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack that held the east coast hostage for a nearly $5 million ransom. 

Those cyberattacks have only paved the way for future cyber terrorism. That fact puts all businesses, not just big corporations, at risk. Practically every business these days relies heavily on the internet to do business. And if you use the internet, your business could potentially be a target for cyberattacks.

Of course, the damage any cyber attack will cause, from loss of data, downtime, the cost of restoring your systems, and customer data breaches can be devastating. The total victim loss from cybercrimes reached $4.2 billion in 2020, according to the FBI’s Internet Crime Report.  And in addition to the financial hit, it could seriously damage your reputation as a company able to protect consumer data. 

Many attacks on small to medium-sized businesses have the potential to cause enough damage to shutter a business without the resources to recover. 

Putting a few extra steps in place, you can prepare your business for cybersecurity and prevent many would-be cybercriminals from accessing your data.

So, how do you protect your business from this type of cyber terrorism?

Expect 2022 to be the year of cybersecurity. One place to start is with the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency, CISA, a federal agency created to provide resources and best practices to SMBs and local government agencies. 

The CISA site is updated regularly to keep up with the most current cybersecurity information and threats. It’s important to stay on top of what’s currently posing the biggest threats. Having access to CISA will help you stay informed.

Adding new changes to your businesses cybersecurity will help keep you on top of any potential breaches.

It’s important to make cybersecurity a priority in your business.

So many business owners overlook simple, easily-remedied vulnerabilities believing that their business isn’t big enough to be at risk. But it can, and often does happen to small businesses, even if you’re not reading about it in the news. 

The biggest difference is if you have a smaller business and you become the victim of a targeted attack from cybercriminals, you may not have the financial resources to bounce back from it as the bigger corporations can. Take cybersecurity seriously and protect your business proactively.

Protect your network with firewalls and multi-factor authentication passwords. That alone will help prepare your business for cyberattacks and go a long way in preventing a breach. 

And if you like to frequent the local Starbucks to use the free Wi-fi, you’re only opening yourself to attacks. Free Wi-fi is an open door to cyber terrorists. A much better option is to invest in a portable hotspot. That way you’ll have your own private network that you can turn on anywhere and remain protected. 

Make sure to train your employees on best cybersecurity practices. Establish your own best practices for your business and make sure your employees understand how to interact with the internet while protecting your company’s sensitive information.

Taking the extra time and effort to establish and monitor your cyber threat vulnerabilities may seem tedious. But the investment into your company’s cyber security could save you thousands, if not tens of thousands, of dollars, protect your reputation, and could even prevent you from having to close your business for good. It’s definitely worth the effort.

If you’re among the 88% of small business owners who feel they’re vulnerable to cybercrimes, contact Ameritech Data Solutions for a consultation or a demo. We can help you protect what’s most important in your business.