For the most part, businesses become quickly aware when a crime is committed against them. In the case of criminal damage and robbery there is tangible evidence, a clear record of loss and often CCTV footage to supplement the case. Even in the event of internal fraud, the evidence is there; although it may be buried deep beneath piles of paperwork or layers of internet security. Unfortunately, in the event of cybercrime, it isn’t always immediately obvious once you’ve become a victim.
Often, businesses can go for months with malware in their systems, tracking employees’ moves and infiltrating deeper into systems as the days go by. Some larger companies aren’t even aware their data has been compromised until the information has gone public. The statistics reveal that 68% of all business affected don’t realise until months later.
Cybercrime is often an invisible risk until it’s too late. Perhaps until your entire computer network has been shut down in a ransomware attack, or customer details have been released into the public domain. The effects of such an event can be devastating to a business.
Which businesses are targeted?
No business is safe from cybercrime. Many still consider that cybercriminals would not target their small business, however, this simply isn’t the case. Small-to-medium businesses are actually the prime targets for cybercriminals, making up 58% of all cybercrime victims in 2018. This is typically due to their defences being generally lower than bigger corporations, making them ‘soft targets’. The industries particularly affected were the public sector, healthcare, retail, food and property management.
Type of attacks
Phishing emails are amongst the most common attacks affecting small-to-medium business. This is when you are sent an apparently ‘legitimate’ email which sends you to a decoy website such as Amazon or PayPal and asks you to update your account details. The cybercriminal will then use these details to commit identity theft. Another form of phishing is ‘Spear Phishing’ which mimics an email from a colleague by imitating email headers and addresses to extort money.
Other common attacks are malware – malicious software designed to infiltrate your computer and steal sensitive information, extort money, or send unwanted advertising – and ransomware – software which encrypts business data and blocks access to your systems until a ransom is paid.
How to stay safe
There’s no way to completely protect your business against cyber-attacks. Hackers are constantly inventing new methods to infiltrate our computers, compromise our system data and gain access to personal information. However, there are things you can do to improve your defences:
• Train your staff to practice vigilance at all times
• Keep your cybersecurity software up to date
• Use strong passwords and don’t reuse them across systems
• Keep up-to-date with the latest breach techniques
• Ensure your Wi-Fi is well encrypted and use a VPN in public
• Invest in Cyber Insurance for your business
What is Cyber Insurance?
Cyber Insurance is designed to act as a safety net for your business following a cyberattack. It covers you against serious damage, loss of data, and the costs associated with a cyber-attack whilst helping you to get back up and running. Standard Business Insurance is unlikely to cover you against the repercussions of such an attack, so this cover exists to properly protect your business against cybercrime.
As well as covering for the immediate implications of the breach, such as business interruption and system damage, your policy will also account for consequential damage such as liability claims and reputational damage – including PR costs.
With the right policy in place, should your business become the next target of a cybercriminal, you will be financially prepared to deal with the aftermath. As well as this, when you take out Cyber Insurance through Edwards Insurance Brokers, you will also benefit from dedicated guidance, claims and expert backing from Chartered brokers.
Cyber Insurance can protect you against:
• Data Breaches
• Reputational Damage
• Liability Claims
• Legal fees
• Investigation and Defence Costs
• Business Interruption
• System Repairs
To find out more about arranging Cyber Insurance for your business, you can call us on 01564 730 900.