The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently launched a new website aimed at educating small business owners on the risks of cybercrime and the steps they can take to protect their business.
“Small businesses are critical to our economic strength, building America’s future, and helping the United States compete in today’s global marketplace,” said FTC Acting Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen. “This innovative new website is a one-stop shop where small businesses can find information to protect themselves from scammers and hackers, as well as resources they can use if they are hit with a cyberattack.”
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) states there are more than 28 million small businesses nationwide, employing nearly 57 million people. SiteLock data shows these businesses are a constant target for cybercriminals, with the average website experiencing 22 attacks per day. Furthermore, in 2016, hackers breached half of all small businesses in the United States, according to the 2016 State of SMB Cybersecurity Report.
Cybercriminals attack these types of businesses because they typically lack the resources or internal expertise to ensure their website is adequately protected. Threats to small businesses include; data theft, ransomware, website defacement, removal from search results, or scams to trick them into giving access to their network.
Cyberattacks can be particularly devastating to small businesses. According to a Kaspersky Lab survey, small businesses shell out an average of $38,000 to recover from a single data breach. This amount climbs once indirect expenses are considered. Examples of indirect costs include reputation damage, loss of customers and website down time.
The FTC’s new web page offers prepackaged materials designed to help small businesses with limited resources protect their networks, website and customer data. This includes a new Small Business Computer Security Basics guide, which shares computer security basics to help companies protect their files and devices, train employees to think twice before sharing the business’s account information, and keep their wireless network protected, as well as how to respond to a data breach. It also has information on other cyber threats such as ransomware and phishing schemes targeting small businesses.
In addition to the best practices provided by the new government page, SiteLock offers all small businesses a free website risk assessment to identify their risk of a potential cyber-attack. Follow the SiteLock blog for more information on how to proactively protect your business from cybercriminals.