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Rising cost of small business data breaches highlights need for layered security

Cybersecurity has been top of mind for practically every enterprise for quite some time now, but it has gotten an extra influx of attention in January after President Obama made it a major focus of his State of the Union address. In his speech, Obama urged Congress to pass upcoming legislation that will help to increase national cybersecurity and made reference to several of the major corporations that were hacked in 2014.

While the president has a point in saying that large scale change needs to occur for enterprise cybersecurity, it’s not just the government and big corporations that need to improve their defenses. Small businesses are some of the hardest hit by cybercrime and are the most in need of enhanced security solutions.

A recent cybersecurity industry report found that nearly 90 percent of small- and medium-sized businesses in the U.S. have no protections in place for customer or company data. On top of that, less than half of those companies utilized email defense to prevent employees from falling for phishing scams.

Not only is this bad business practice, but it’s an expensive mistake to make. The U.S. economy loses $100 billion every year from cybercrime and cyber espionage, making up one-third of the total global cost of cybercrime​, according to the Center for Strategic and International Studies. A study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers found that the worst breaches for small businesses cost between $98,000 and $175,000 on average.

Layered security offers answers to troubled IT departments
So what’s a small business IT leader to do in order to keep rising prices and cybercrime threats down? Utilizing a layered security approach allows organizations to access a variety of defense tools within a single strategy, keeping complexity and cost down while increasing data security. Recent research has found that 80 percent of security intrusions occur as a result of employee behavior, the Guardian reported. Some workers aren’t able to tell the difference between a legitimate and malicious link, while other don’t even take the time to check. Therefore, companies should put controls in place to ensure staff members aren’t clicking on links from fraudulent websites or forwarding phony emails.

Utilizing systems like application whitelisting allows organizations to whitelist applications and allow only preapproved programs to be run which keeps the systems free from malicious software being executed. Anti-Executable comes with a central management tool that the program to be installed and managed with only a few clicks of a mouse, dramatically reducing complexity and increase security.

About The Author

Matt Williams

A self-proclaimed ‘tech geek’, Matt has worked in technology for a decade and divides his time between blogging and working in IT. A huge New York Giants fan, expert on Reboot Restore Technology when not watching football Matt gets his game on playing Call of Duty with his friends and other tech bloggers.

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