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10 tips to help protect your business from cyber threats

Today’s digital world offers convenience, accessibility and speed. At the same time, it also makes users and businesses vulnerable to cyber threats such as viruses, data breaches and identity fraud.

Does your business have the safeguards in place to prevent cyber threats, and most importantly, to protect your business if a cyber incident takes place?

What type of businesses do cyber hackers target?

While it may be easy to assume that large companies and their data are a greater target for hackers, this is not always the case. Many cyber criminals target small to medium sized businesses as they may not have the same cyber security precautions in place.

What are the consequences of a cyber threat?

Your business can experience both financial damage and reputation loss in the event of a cyber incident. For example, because your business has an obligation to protect personal and financial information associated with your business, it would be held responsible for any repercussions resulting from a data breach.

Research done by technology company, Symantec, states that the average cost of a cyber attack to a small to medium sized business is nearly $200,000. Consequently, 60% of small businesses that experience a cyber attack close their doors within six months.

10 ways to protect your business from a cyber threat

Here are simple measures your business can take to protect itself from a cyber incident:

  1. Ensure all laptops are password protected.
  2. Provide each employee with an individual user account.
  3. Regularly change passwords.
  4. Install and regularly use anti-virus and anti-spyware software on every computer.
  5. Download and install software updates for operating systems and applications as they become available.
  6. Limit authority for installing software on computers.
  7. Limit employee access to data and information.
  8. Make backup copies of important business data and information. Have your backup copies stored safely off-site.
  9. Lock and secure laptops when they are not in use.
  10. Ensure your business has cyber insurance in place to protect important information and customer data if there is a security breach.

For more risk management measures you can take for your business, click here.

Types of cyber insurance coverage

Cyber insurance helps protect your business against the financial effects of cyber threats. There are several types of cyber insurance coverage that can help protect your business from a cyber incident:

  1. Crime coverage – Your business data is considered an asset. In the event it is damaged or stolen, this is considered a crime. Crime coverage can protect you against criminal activity that affects financial assets. It may also cover forged payments, counterfeit currency or fraud.
  2. Property coverage – This type of property coverage is related to your company’s data and how damage to this data impacts your business. This could include costs associated with computer hardware, repairing or restoring systems, data recovery, customer notification and crisis management services. Ultimately this type of coverage provides financial protection against reparations your business would pay to recover from a cyber incident.
  3. Third party liability coverage – This coverage can provide restitution to a third party who experiences damages as a result of a data breach.

Learn more about cyber insurance here.

Many cyber insurance policies provide more than one type of coverage. It is important to be aware that these types of protection are not included in typical business liability policies. Speak to your BrokerLink broker to ensure your business is protect against all types of cyber threats.

2 Comments

  1. Eliza Cranston

    I agree that it is really important to protect against a cyber security breach. I have a small business but I have a lot of employee and customer information that I need to protect. I’ll talk to my insurance broker about my options!