Why Do Startups and SMEs Need to Strengthen their Cybersecurity Posture?

There’s a quote in the cybersecurity industry: There are two kinds of companies in the world; those that know they have been hacked and those that don’t…

This quote best exemplifies the truth in cybersecurity. No industry, sector, or country is quarantined against a cyber attack. 

There is a huge misconception that it is often assumed that cybersecurity training and awareness is a matter of concern for only large businesses and enterprises as they are more vulnerable to threats and have more at stake running around in today’s world only big companies are vulnerable to a cyber-attack. 

Well, it is not entirely true. As per the World Economic Forum in 2019, cybersecurity is the number one worry for CEOs around the world. A data breach does not only impact the reputation but also has a direct impact on the balance sheet of an organization.

Why Hackers Prefer Small Businesses?

It is a well-acknowledged fact that the hackers have equal if not better resources that are at par with security professionals. So, the threat is real. But, the main reason behind a firm getting hacked is not the size of the organization but the preferences of the hackers and the security of the organization. A start-up or small business is as vulnerable to cyber threats as a large corporation. 

The reason for this is simple – a larger business has more awareness and resources to pump into protecting its valuable data, training its staff in cybersecurity, and implementing solutions to secure its informational assets.

Most small businesses and start-ups do not consider security as a priority which is a dangerous trend. They have a natural tendency of complacency shown towards cybersecurity. 

The start-ups have a treasure trove of information that hackers would love to exploit. Some companies have a cache of customer information including the credit and debit card details in their early stage. Such information is a goldmine for hackers who would want to conduct financial fraud. 

Additionally, hackers are also interested in stealing innovative ideas and intellectual property that start-ups have.

Here’s a closer look at why your start-up/small business is an attractive target for cyber-criminals:

  1. Lack of expertise, training, and budget for providing thorough security defense
  2. Lack of dedicated cybersecurity specialists on the payroll
  3. Limited security awareness in employees
  4. Security defenses may be implemented but are not always kept up to date

So now look at the reasons why any start-up and small business should go for the option of security?

1. Client/Customer Data Privacy

While small businesses and start-ups may not have as wide a threat landscape as large corporations, they do have sensitive employee and customer information. 

Hackers are interested in getting personal or financial information such as social security numbers or banking details, and small businesses are easy targets for them.

2. Non-Compliance is Now Compulsory

Data breach regulations have become more and more stringent the world over and there’s no escaping them if you’re running a business, regardless of its scale and size. 

For compliance, one has to invest in cybersecurity solutions alone, while in case of non-compliance, one will have to bear data breach costs, reputational costs, and operational costs. 

The cost of non-compliance with good cybersecurity practices can be more costly than that of compliance in case of data breaches. 

3. Downtime of Your Business Can Cause Monetary Loss

Every time there is a data breach, there is downtime when business is not as usual. 

This is critical as you can suffer huge blows in terms of monetary losses. Small businesses and start-ups will be diverted towards recovering from the breach, ignoring other business operations and losing whatever edge they may have managed to maintain in an intensely competitive market. 

The best way to avoid this is to ensure cybersecurity best practices, having a solid incident response plan, and preventing potential data breaches from occurring.

This is a huge reason to have a good contingency and response plan in place. Lawsuits have a history of destroying big corporates. Nothing sucks the life out of a business than a big lawsuit.

The costs of going into court are huge for any business. The resources should be focused on the development and implementation of a new idea.

Also Read: Scan Your Application for Cyber Risk Score With ESOF AppSec FREE TRIAL

Final Words

It is good that the focus remains on proactively having a good data security plan in place beforehand, rather than waiting for a cyber attack to happen and losing all the crucial data. 
TAC Security combines the widest view of vulnerability and risk data across the enterprise (both startups and SMEs) to create insightful cyber risk scores. The power of artificial intelligence and user-friendly analytics helps you measure, prioritize, and mitigate vulnerabilities across your entire IT stack.

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