Cyber Attack

Small Businesses are Just the Right Size to Be Hacked

For years, traditional wisdom has always been that large corporations are the primary target for hackers.  This thinking stemmed from the understanding that motivations for hackers has evolved over the years to focus on monetary gain.  In the early 2000’s, the motivation for hackers was to gain knowledge and discover what their true capabilities were.  As time progressed, hackers figured out that there was tremendous opportunity for monetary gain.

 

Early on, the monetization of cybercrime was with adware and scareware.  Adware are a type of electronically transmitted disease (ETD) that caused pop-ups to appear on your computer in an attempt to force you to purchase something (Figure 1).  Scareware, another form of ETD, cause similar popups that had a message that would try to scare you into purchasing a virus removal tool (Figure 2).  Usually the message said something to the effect of “Your computer has been infected with 1,000,000,000 viruses, and if you click here to purchase our virus removal tool, we can completely clean your computer.”

 

Figure 1:

Figure 2:

As the importance of information and its availability has continued to grow, hackers have turned their focus to data theft.  In this, our current era, information is king, and data is more valuable than gold.    Large corporations understand this and they have been consistently investing in their cybersecurity programs.  As such, it has become riskier for hackers to target large corporations directly.

 

That leads us to the why small businesses are so attractive to hackers.  Hacker understand that that most small businesses do not have adequate resources to protect themselves.  They also understand that small businesses continue to operate under the old beliefs that they do not have anything worth stealing.  It is those old beliefs that make small business most vulnerable because it prevents them from investing in the protections necessary ensure they do not become the next hacking victims.  Small businesses are attractive targets because they: (1) collect data directly from customers; (2) have websites that are unprotected that allow hackers to attach ETD’s to them, and (3)  conduct business with larger corporations that gives them access to the larger corporation’s data.

 

According to StaySafeOnline.org, attacks on small businesses now account for over 70% of data breaches, a number that appears to be on the rise. Close to half of small businesses have been compromised.  Ransomware attacks alone have skyrocketed a whopping 250% since 2016, and incidents of phishing have followed suit, as reported by Media Planet.  It is suspect these numbers would be higher, but a large percentage of small businesses don’t even know that they have been breached.

 

CarTek Consulting understands the resource constraints of small businesses, we account for these constraints in our pricing.  CarTek truly offers the protections of a large corporation at small business prices.  Visit our website at https://www.cartekconsulting.com/service-packages/ to find out more.

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