Cyber criminals eye South African SMEs lack of security

Small businesses in South Africa, according to Steve Flynn, Sales and Marketing Director of ESET South Africa, are particularly susceptible to cyberattacks. Why? Business owners frequently suffer severe financial repercussions because they fail to take the appropriate security measures for their digital assets.

SMEs appear hesitant to take the same digital preventative steps to secure their IT infrastructure as they would to protect their office equipment or company-owned vehicles, despite the enormous hazards.

SMEs shouldn’t leave their digital assets unlocked and accessible to thieves, just as a business owner wouldn’t underinsure a physical asset like a factory.

Preventative measures must be assessed against the consequences of not having IT security protection in place in a business setting where every dollar counts.

Threats are increasing in frequency as internet activity and hybrid working increase globally and in South Africa.

In less than a year, secret password attacks rose alarmingly by 104%, according to ESET’s 2021 threat report.

In fewer than six months, that translates to 55 billion new attacks being found. The most recent data are grim to read and highlight the likelihood that sophisticated criminal networks would target South African enterprises.

It’s a matter of when, not if, a compromise is launched on any given corporate network, regardless of size, due to the sheer volume of attacks.

Attacks using ransomware are also on the rise, with serious repercussions for organizations of all kinds. A supply-chain attack that took use of software flaws in a company’s IT management system is just one example.

An ultimatum of USD$70 million was issued in conjunction with this ransomware incident in order to reclaim operational and digital asset control for the organization.

Given the perceived levels of physical security, it is considerably harder to steal something physical. However, digital compromise happens in a split second. The cost of the disruption of traditional business models is undoubtedly a factor in the price-benefit equation.

IT security breaches within a sole proprietor or SME can cause havoc, unlike huge corporations that have redundant functions among workers and well-resourced IT teams to tackle concerns.

The loss of output, potential revenue loss, and opportunity cost all increase anxiety. Not to mention the troubling problem of brand replication and impersonation online.

According to estimates, more than half of firms collapse within six months of a hack, making this phenomenon essential to the survival and development of businesses.

Worse than that, organizations with fewer than 1000 employees make up 61% of all data breach victims.

Even those with responsible internet usage can become victims of a data leak even if they aren’t participating in the digital gold rush of cryptocurrencies or using the dark web.

SMEs may think about collaborating with a group committed to developing products that continuously address the most recent cyber concerns.

Only a framework of software countermeasures that has evolved at the same rate as the threat can effectively combat it.

Information sourced from My Broadband.

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