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11 Jun Small Businesses are Increasingly Targeted for Ransomware Attacks
As a small business, cybersecurity measures may not be on your radar. You may think small business ransomware attacks don’t happen very often, or that they only happen to large-scale companies. Unfortunately, both of these assertions are incorrect.
According to a recent story by 60 Minutes on ransomware, around 26% of cities and counties report fending off hourly attacks to their networks. Ransomware is one of the most common cyber attack methods that affects all types of businesses. When cybersecurity criminals commit this act, they lock up a business’s files until they receive the ransom they’ve requested.
Find out how you can use small business loans to fund the cybersecurity measures to keep business running smoothly.
Why Small Businesses Are Targets of Ransomware
In an alarming trend, cyber criminals are targeting smaller victims with ransomware practices. This puts everything from municipalities and community hospitals to mom-and-pop shops and other independent organizations at the highest risk for small business ransomware attacks.
For example, the 60 Minutes story profiled a hospital in Indiana that was asked to pay $55,000 to regain access to its network. This ransom amount seems to be the payout “sweet spot” of funding requested by hackers. In essence, they know they are likely to get paid. A $55,000 ransom is significant to large businesses. But the impact these attacks have on small practices is almost insurmountable. Regardless, a majority of ransomware attack victims will pony up the money. It’s not worth it to lose the business’s information and experience the fallout from that.
Many small businesses don’t expect a cyber attack to affect them. There are bigger fish to fry, right? Unfortunately, hackers have begun exclusively preying on small practices that have less sophisticated cybersecurity measures in place. For that reason, businesses should plan for the worst and expect the unexpected. “I think everyone should expect to be attacked,” said Mike Christman of the FBI in the 60 Minutes story. Cyber criminals know businesses, government agencies, and hospitals hold crucial and confidential information. As such, they are more likely to pay the ransom because they can’t afford not to.
How Ransomware Happens
Cyber attacks can occur when small businesses least expect it. For example, with a simple click of a what appears to be a harmless email link or desktop extension, you or an employee could unknowingly download malware. Even the simplest online action can have malicious activity attached to it and quickly turn into a small business ransomware attack. Within moments, a cyber criminal can install software onto your computer that locks you out of your files. As a result, an organization can go from smooth sailing to a startling halt with no access to their most critical information.
Something even more alarming? Many cyber criminals are selling actual ransomware software to anyone looking to deploy an attack. It could be obtained by anyone, even one of your competitors, no coding necessary.
What You Can Do to Prevent Small Business Ransomware Attacks
We’re not telling you all this to scare you. We think of it more as a wake-up call. You might think the small scope of your business would prevent hackers from being interested in your company. However, it’s important that you’re aware of the prevalence of cyber attacks on small businesses. And it’s crucial that you take preventative action to ward off hackers.
Funding from an alternative lender might be what you need to finance small business cybersecurity protection. When you work with QuickBridge, you can expect capital in as little as 24 hours, so you can put this cash toward your security measures as soon as possible.
Your information is too important to fall into the wrong hands. We invite you to view our ransomware infographic and learn more ways to protect your small business from cyber threats.