As a small or medium-sized business owner, you might assume hackers target large organizations with the goal of raking in more money. In reality, no business is totally safe from cyberattacks, and SMBs are actually targeted at nearly the same rate as large enterprises.

Here is what the statistics have to say about why SMBs need robust security measures, too.

43% of cyber attacks target small businesses

Hackers will often target SMBs because the companies’ computer and security systems are typically less complex, making it easier for hackers to access sensitive information. Additionally, businesses today are digitally connected to each other, so hackers often see small businesses as an access point to the systems of large companies, which may have more secure systems.

The average cost of a small business data breach was $2.98 million in 2021

Despite being targeted the most, large-sized businesses may experience a smaller impact from cyber attacks, but for small and medium-sized businesses, the cost of a data breach can be a disaster. In fact, 60% of small and mid-sized businesses go out of business within six months after an attack.

78% of SMBs View Security as Their Top Cloud Security Challenge

Businesses of all sizes are attracted to cloud computing because of its flexibility, scalability, and efficiency, but without the right security measures in place, cloud computing can open businesses, especially small businesses, up to various security risks.

While many small businesses recognize this, they don’t always have the resources to effectively strengthen their security posture. According to a report published by Threatpost, less than 30% of SMBs have a dedicated IT security professional on staff, and more than half of the surveyed businesses said that they distribute security responsibilities across different company roles.

54% of SMBs don’t have a plan for reacting to cyber attacks

Often due to the belief that they won’t be targeted, over half of SMBs are not prepared for a cyberattack, and this can lead to disastrous consequences. Cyberattacks are no longer a question of “if” but “when,” so without an incident response and disaster recovery plan in place, SMBs will have a much more difficult time repairing the damage caused by an attack. By outsourcing to an IT security service provider like AccountabilIT, SMBs can rest assured that they are well-equipped to deal with any security incidents or breaches.

It takes businesses an average of 287 days to identify and contain a breach

The quicker a business can detect a breach, the more quickly it can minimize the damage. This is especially critical for SMBs who can’t afford the costs of getting their business back on track, which can often exceed the amount of what was lost in the attack. A delayed response to data breaches can also harm your productivity, customer relationships, and could result in major fines due to compliance violations.

85% of data breaches are due to human error

Employees are every business’s most important asset, but they’re still humans, and humans make mistakes. Unfortunately, those mistakes can end up damaging your business. According to Tessian’s The Psychology of Human Error, 25% of employees admitted to having clicked on a phishing email while at work, some of which reported that they were not even aware of what a phishing email was.

Other common errors include:

  • Asset misconfiguration (which allows for unauthorized access)
  • Misdelivery (sending emails to the wrong recipients or accidentally emailing sensitive data)
  • Publishing errors (such as accidentally publishing confidential information on a public site)

In any case, human error remains one of the top causes of data breaches, so it’s critical for small and medium-sized businesses to have procedures and protocols in place that help minimize human error and its impact.

57% of breaches involve external threat actors

Despite being an improvement from 2020, 57% of SMBs still experienced breaches by external actors. Of the different types of security breaches, social engineering is the most common cause of security breach (with phishing being the most common method used) followed by ransomware attacks.

About two-thirds of breaches are a result of supplier or third-party vulnerabilities

Whether it’s recruitment or IT, outsourcing can be an effective way to save on internal resources while increasing efficiency. However, the more third-party vendors with which an organization engages, the more it opens itself up to cybersecurity threats. Those vendors are also partnered with other organizations, creating a complex web of digital business relationships—which often goes unmonitored. When choosing the right vendor or service provider, SMBs should look at their risk and vulnerability management programs.

74% of organizations say remote work vulnerabilities are the cause of business-impacting cyberattacks

COVID-19 fundamentally shifted work environments everywhere, with large numbers of employees working from home. Personal devices, mobile applications, and cloud migration quickly became the new norm, and these technologies have eliminated the security barriers for many businesses. Furthermore, the need to quickly adapt has left business owners and IT managers struggling to keep up with the new technology.

Small and mid-sized businesses may struggle even more as they don’t have the same resources to invest in advanced technology or to hire a dedicated IT team.

What Can You Do to Protect Your Business?

Despite the statistics, SMBs don’t need to worry about their business’s cybersecurity when they choose AccountabilIT as their IT partner. We aren’t just your Managed Service Provider, we are also your cybersecurity partner, so you know your information is safe. We are proud to offer enterprise-level security solutions that are scalable to any size business and budget.

Connect with us today to learn how we can prevent your small or mid-sized business from becoming another statistic.