Bharat Bhise HNA – Should Small Businesses Care About Cybersecurity
Running a small business is not easy and there is a lot to think about when it comes to investing money of any type. Something that is widely accepted as a necessary cost is security and no matter whether you run a bar, an office or a small store, security for your staff and for your business is paramount. But what about cybersecurity? In an age where computers are used so heavily for such a huge range of businesses, what should small businesses be doing in this regard? To find out more I spoke to cybersecurity expert Bharat Bhise HNA who works with many small businesses, and these were my takeaways.
It Can Happen
For cybercriminals, small businesses are considered to be low hanging fruit which they can easily break into. The reason for this? The fact that they either have outdated or a complete lack of cybersecurity on their servers or their computer systems. What we have to think about is the value of a particular hack, versus the risk. A cybercriminal may not be able to get a plethora of valuable information from a small business, but the risk of getting caught is almost minimal and they can do it multiple times. Think of this like pickpocket versus a bank robber.
Considering the Damage
Small businesses must consider the potential damage which a cyber attack could do. They should assume that without cybersecurity that this will happen, if it does, what would be lost? When weighing this up business owners should think about how much information they have on their systems about staff, customers, finances and the business on the whole. They should also bear in mind the cost of a hack, if the systems go down how long will you be offline? What damage could this do to the day to day running of the business? Finally consider the damaged reputation which you’ll face if you are hacked, how will customers feel about your business knowing that you didn’t protect the information of your previous clients? This is the conversation which small business owners need to have with themselves when considering this.
Why One and Not The Other?
In the large majority of the country there is a much higher risk of falling victim to a cyber attack than there is falling victim to a break in or a theft. Considering the money that we are happy to invest in cameras, electronic tags and security staff, it would make a lot of sense to have the same approach to protecting the computer system inside the business.
The conclusion here is that any small business which stores important and/or confidential information on their computer systems must care about cybersecurity and they must invest wherever possible in ensuring that they have at least some form of protection against this. A failure to do so could be very expensive and it could also be very damaging for the company, regardless of its size.