4th August, 2014

Zurich: Small businesses a target for cyber criminals

A recent report from Zurich Insurance Group has highlighted exactly how small businesses are at risk from cyber security attacks.

The study found that SMEs are increasingly being targeted by cyber criminals, as a way to disrupt the operations of larger companies. Because of the growing interconnectedness between firms, flaws in the security of one company can have disastrous consequences for all of their clients.

This interdependence means that small and medium businesses are at high risk of cyber crime and other attacks, with information stored online an easy target for those looking to disrupt business activity.

In order to address these challenges, the report made a number of recommendations for companies looking to preserve their reputation and relations with clients. One of the most central recommendations was to make sure your business and professional indemnity insurance can cover you in the event of a cyber attack, helping to minimise any loses.

Another thing which companies need to keep in mind is the importance of maintaining security systems which can defend against cyber attacks. Investing in processes which regularly test internal systems is an easy way for companies to ensure their security is robust.

Zurich also suggested making sure that any companies that are involved with your IT security, like a cloud computing provider for example, has processes in place which can protect you against cyber threats.

SMEs that outsource their IT functionality can be an attractive target for cyber criminals, making it very important that you keep this relationship as secure as possible. Writing this sort of detail into your service agreement or contract is just one way to ensure your company information is secure.

Finally, the report encouraged SMEs to think about resilience in their corporate processes. Having procedures in place so that your company can bounce back from a major cyber breach is going to become even more important for companies over the next few years.

Author: Murray Bruce