Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) thrive in today’s digital revolution. However, one roadblock to their success is the challenge of maintaining cyber security, especially amid a global pandemic.


Today, data breaches are more rampant than ever as more SMBs emerge online. Verizon’s 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) analysed 29,207 cybersecurity incidents, wherein 5,258 of them were confirmed breaches. The report concluded that just about any company is prone to a cyberattack risk regardless of the size of their operations or what industry they’re in.


SMBs need to know how to combat the increased risk of breaches such as ransomware and phishing. So how can SMBs heighten their security against the ever-evolving herd of cyber attackers?


Smaller Gap Between SMBs and Large Enterprises

Cyber attacks do not choose their victims based on their organisation’s size. Instead, they strike any company that lacks digital brand protection. So, whether the company is an SMB or a global corporation, no business is too small to become a victim of a cyber attack.


Compared to last year, DBIR’s 2021 report accounted for a smaller gap between small and large businesses regarding the number of data breaches. The report found 307 breaches in large enterprises and 263 in small organisations, which is not a significant difference. However, it’s important to note that the recorded attacks were not all direct; instead, the attacks within a larger supply chain also affected SMBs.


Furthermore, the same DBIR report found that large corporations positively responded to detecting the breaches, with 55 per cent of the cases recognising risks within days or less. In contrast, SMBs fell slightly at the rate of 47 per cent regarding how prompt their responses were against data breaches.


Considering that SMBs and larger organisations are now at the same risk level, it’s time for SMBs to catch up on their security measures. This means that they’ll have to prioritise professional security services to protect their business against brand abuse.

Phishing and Ransomware

Two of the most common breaches that SMBs encounter are phishing and ransomware. Based on the DBIR’s dataset, phishing incidents presented a significant increase with 36 per cent as opposed to last year’s 25 per cent. For over 14 years, there has been a 25 per cent year on year increase in phishing attacks, making it one of the top cybersecurity attacks that SMBs should watch out for.


Ransomware threats also doubled their frequency compared to last year’s data. This type of malware employs encryption to hold the business’s information at ransom. Now, ransomware places SMBs in a difficult position of choosing whether to pay a hefty price or get their data leaked, so it’s essential to carefully plan the response against this threat.


Preparing for Security Threats

Data breaches and cybersecurity threats never come as expected. Especially for businesses in the digital market, it’s vital to formulate a solid cybersecurity response plan to just about any attack you can potentially face. With the right digital brand protection, you can keep your company safe against financial and reputational downfalls.


Based on what’s outlined in the DIBR summary, it is clear that cyber attackers do not rule out SMBs as their potential victims. As SMBs grow, so does the risk to their business. Fortunately, a solid cybersecurity system and effective people management can help entrepreneurs be more confident in their efforts against data breaches.


As one of the leading companies providing brand abuse protection, FraudWatch has been protecting client brands, including SMBs worldwide, since 2003. Our company specialises in providing online brand protection against phishing, malware, piracy, social media and mobile apps impersonations, and more. Ready to upgrade your business’s cybersecurity system? Contact us today for more information.