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Small businesses tend to default to the mindset that they are not likely targets for cybercriminals. The commonly-heard arguments to support this idea include:  

“My business is too small. Why would anyone target me?” 

“My business doesn't have data hacker would want.” 

“My risk is probably so low that investing in cybersecurity products would be a waste of money.” 

In truth, none of these statements are correct -- at least not anymore. While it's true that a decade ago, cyberattacks were mostly carried out against large organizations, new hacking strategies have changed that fact entirely.

One reason is that larger enterprises have more security. Cybercriminals started to realize that attacking a "big fish" with top-notch security was far more difficult than taking down several small businesses who were still ignoring security completely. Like most criminals, hackers are opportunists who will usually go for the low-hanging fruit. SMBs who are complacent when it comes to security have become that fruit.

SMB Cybersecurity Challenges

Let's take a look at what challenges SMBs are facing in the modern cyberthreat landscape.

Increasing Volume of Cyberattacks

The COVID pandemic changed a lot of things worldwide, but it's worth noting that it led to a massive spike in the number of cyberattacks from hacker groups that's still carrying on. BlackBerry reported a 600% increase in cybercrimes due to the pandemic, and over 600 million new malware detections occurred during 2020.

Fewer Resources and Lack of Expertise

Another reason hackers have turned an eye toward small business is their typical lack of security expertise. A large number of SMBs don't know what they don't know, and that leaves them vulnerable.

Businesses of all sizes should be investing in security in terms of  technology and user education. Cyber risk is becoming so prevalent that ignoring it is a gamble that can no longer be won.

Exposure To New Ransomware Attacks

Everyone has learned that SMBs are extremely vulnerable to ransomware attacks. Hackers know this better than anyone. Not only do small businesses often lack the technology to protect them -- such as data backup solutions and security monitoring -- but they're often staffed by people with low awareness of cyber risk. This increases the likelihood that someone in an SMB will engage with a phishing email and trigger the ransomware infection.

Weak Points

A recent study from cybersecurity provider CyberCatch found that “more than 30% of U.S. small businesses have weak points that bad actors can exploit. Moreover, fraudsters tend to set their sights on small businesses since smaller companies usually have weaker security safeguards in place compared with those at larger companies.”

3i International Can Help

IT providers and security specialists like 3i International can step in to fill those gaps in expertise and technology for your organization. We can provide you with the security solutions and end-user training you need to avoid the growing risk of SMB-targeted cyberattacks. Get in touch with us today to learn more.