As Canadian businesses navigate the challenges of a looming recession and heightened scrutiny of customer data security, the imperative of ‘Cybersecurity is Critical for SMBs’ becomes increasingly clear. With the Insurance Bureau of Canada reporting that cyberattacks cost businesses over $100,000 in 2021, the urgency is evident. This article aims to shed light on the impact of cyber threats on businesses. As well as provide practical strategies for SMBs to bolster their defenses and mitigate risks. Not only does our focus lie in highlighting the challenges faced by Canadian SMBs, but we also strive to empower them with the necessary knowledge and tools to effectively safeguard against potential cyber breaches.

Common Types of Cyberattacks

There are many common types of cyber attacks that businesses face. Phishing and social engineering attacks are becoming more common, and they have the potential to be highly effective against businesses that lack robust cybersecurity defenses.  In addition to covering the three common types of Phishing attacks in another article, it’s important to note that ransomware attacks are increasingly frequent. These attacks not only cause significant disruption but also lead to substantial financial losses for smaller businesses. Attacks using ransomware are increasing in frequency, and they have the potential to cause significant disruption as well as financial losses for smaller businesses. The average cost of a data breach in Canada was $7.3 million CAD in 2021, representing a 20% increase of $900,000 in 2020, according to IBM and Proxyrack. Scams involving business email compromise, also known as BEC, have the potential to cause significant financial losses for smaller companies.

The Effects of Cyberattacks on Businesses

Ransom payouts are not the only impact businesses face after a cyberattack. Many companies have to handle many internal costs to fix or repair any damages caused.  In some cases they need to hire firms to assist in securing their systems after an attack.

Furthermore, cyber attacks can also cause irreparable harm to the reputation of a business, which in turn can lead to a loss of customers and revenue.  One study found that 60% of all companies that suffer a data breach are forced into bankruptcy within six months. In addition, the company may be subject to legal and regulatory challenges if a business does not comply with data privacy regulations such as GDPR or PIPEDA. With security practices in place and employee cyber hygiene training, you can reduce the chances of an attack.

How to Mitigate an Attack

The good news is that businesses can frequently prevent cyberattacks and take action to lessen their damage in a relatively simple and affordable manner. Here are two suggestions for enhancing the cybersecurity of your company which you can implement today:

  • Make cybersecurity a continuous effort. Being prepared is the best way to lessen the harm caused by a cyberattack. This might entail creating a thorough cybersecurity plan and hiring specialists as needed. It’s ideal to keep software updated with the most recent security patches, and protect devices from hackers.
  • Strengthen your ‘Human’ firewall. Your strongest or weakest line of defense may be your employees. Cybercriminals and hackers frequently access systems by duping your staff into handing over passwords. Employees need to be continuously trained on the risks of cyberattacks and the significance of being watchful. Consider holding training sessions to educate staff on recognizing cyberthreats, as well as using two-factor authentication and creating strong passwords. Ask us how we can train your staff to be more cyber-aware.

In Closing

To conclude, the importance of ‘Cybersecurity is Critical for SMBs’ is a fundamental truth for Canadian businesses in today’s climate. Given the economic uncertainties adopting proactive cybersecurity measures is not just beneficial; it is absolutely essential. This includes establishing comprehensive cybersecurity plans, engaging specialists, implementing robust antivirus solutions, and fortifying the ‘human firewall’ through employee education. Our on-demand webinar, The Evolving Cybersecurity Landscape is tailored to for you. Stay ahead in safeguarding your business against cyber threats.