By John Hill, President/CEO, TechSage Solutions

As the CEO, Owner or Manager for a small to medium sized business you probably feel have more than enough on your plate with running your company, taking care of personnel issues, making payroll and all of those other pressing duties. You don't really have the time, knowledge or money to spend on all those security measures you keep hearing and reading about and besides, your company is small, not like ADP, Sony, Home Depot or Tesla, so no one is going to want to back your systems, right? Absolutely wrong!

According to the National Cyber Security Alliance one in five small businesses fall victim to cybercrime each year and that number is growing, 50% of small businesses have experienced a cyber-attack and over 70% of all cyber-attacks target small businesses. (Study by Paychex and the National Cyber Security Alliance published January 19, 2016) The problem is that small businesses are low hanging fruit for cyber-attacks because they don’t believe they are a target and as a result they have very loose or no real security systems or protocols in place to protect themselves. The real truth is that small businesses are bigger targets than larger institutions because although the prize may not be as large they are far easier to hack. Cyber criminals don’t wake up thinking, who do I want to try to hack today, they now use automated tools that scan hundreds and thousands of businesses for vulnerabilities and when one is found the tools automatically install themselves and the compromise begins. That brings us to another statistic from the National Cyber Security Alliance. As much as 60% of small to medium sized businesses that experience a data breach go out of business within six months to a year. The statistics aren’t promising for small to medium sized businesses.

My friends, thinking or hoping you won't get hacked isn't a good strategy, in fact, it's not a strategy at all. Former FBI Director Mueller once said, “There are only two types of organizations: those that have been hacked and those that will be.” Here are some tips on things you can do to help reduce cybercrime threats that are free or low cost.

  • Cancel your debit cards; they are the #1way bank accounts get compromised
  • Have a dedicated PC for online banking and DON’T use that PC for accessing any other web sites, email access, social media sites or for downloading files and applications.
  • Sign up for email alerts from your bank whenever a withdrawal over $100 is processed.
  • Sign up for email alerts from your credit card providers whenever any charges are processed.
  • Require YOUR signature for any wire transfers.
  • Have your money spread out in multiple accounts to minimize the risk.
  • Carry Cyber Liability Insurance

For more information on how to help protect yourself and your company from cyber threats you can request our FREE Executive Brief, 7 Critical IT Security Protections and subscribe to our FREE IT Security Tip of the Week Educational Series at or call 210-582-5814 for help.