Think you’re too small for a cyberattack? Or maybe you’re thinking that hackers couldn’t care less about the data that you have. After all, it’s not government secrets or research and development type stuff, right?
That’s what hackers are hoping you’re thinking. They count on the fact that smaller companies think they’re just little fish and that cybercriminals are only going after the big catches.
When companies think this way, they’re not protecting their network assets as they should. They may never do IT audits, thinking “Those are only for big companies.” And things like endpoint device management or managed IT services may not be on their radar at all.
This makes attacking them so much easier for those bad actors. This is why a hacker’s best-kept secret is that they actually LOVE small businesses.
A recent study found that small businesses are 3x more likely to be targeted by cybercriminals than larger ones. The study looked at millions of emails across thousands of companies. It turns out that workers at businesses with less than 100 employees receive about 350% more social engineering attacks than those at big enterprises.
The hard reality is that hackers do care about your small business, they care quite a lot.
It’s true that a smaller company may not have the same volume of data as a larger one. They may have a few hundred customers in their database, rather than the thousands an enterprise might have.
However, it’s not just about what’s in your data, it’s about the fact that hackers know that YOU care about your data. That’s all they need to launch a targeted ransomware attack.
Ransomware brings a payday to cybercriminals for any size company. Once it is unleashed in a network, it makes all data unreadable. Companies get locked out of their computer systems, and their operations basically come to a standstill.
The SMBs pay up because they can’t afford to be down and lose all that revenue. They may not have a relationship with an IT provider (because they didn’t think hackers cared about them), making it harder to get help for their IT emergency.
Here are some of the reasons hackers target smaller companies over larger ones.
The misconception that hackers aren’t looking their way, causes many small business owners to go cheap on cybersecurity. They think they only need the bare minimum, rather than using best practices.
This leaves them vulnerable and much easier to hack than a large enterprise with tons of security throughout its network. Criminals often go for the low-hanging fruit. The “sure bet.” That’s what smaller companies represent to them.
Nearly three-quarters (73%) of the small businesses hit with a ransomware attack have paid the ransom. With 46% of all small companies getting targeted, the math works in the favor of the attacker.
The ransom amounts paid are hefty for companies and lucrative for attackers:
When companies are unprepared – incomplete backup, no incident response plan, untrained staff – they don’t know what to do. Thus, they resort to giving the attacker what they want, hoping the criminal will hold up their end of the bargain and return access to the data.
Even after being attacked and paying a ransom, many SMB owners will go back to business as usual. Instead of learning a lesson and putting cybersecurity safeguards in place, they feel like they’ve already been hit, so are safe now.
But hackers now know two important things about your business:
So, they wait a while to give you time to get more cash built up in the bank, and then strike again. Why would they give up a sure thing?
Hackers know that smaller companies have a much higher chance of trying to do IT on their own. Instead of working with an IT provider, many will just call a computer shop when things break.
The beak/fix mentality is another thing hackers love. This means a company is not being proactive and is taking a stance of “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
This opens the door to sneaky attacks. Ones that leave malware sitting in a system for months, just waiting until a company may not have any backups left that aren’t infected.
Working with an IT provider doesn’t have to break the bank. Digital Crisis can customize a plan for your Houston area small business that prevents a costly attack and gives you peace of mind.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation. Call 713-965-7200 or reach us online.