Website Security Concerns: 31 Percent of Targeted Attack Victims are SMBs

Have you or your team checked your small business website’s security, lately? If you haven’t done so in weeks, even months – beware; chances are, you are already a victim of cyber attacks – without you knowing it.

Or, have you ever noticed that a number of spam emails you receive is getting smarter and smarter?

I have received a series of emails, which look as if they were sent from the web services I regularly use, such as Paypal, LinkedIn, Amazon, etc. LinkedIn? Yes. I received numerous fake connection requests. The emails look strikingly similar to those sent by LinkedIn. I almost clicked the link – and I realized that the link is not leading to LinkedIn.

Indeed, targeted attacks have caused headaches to businesses, and they are showing no sign of slowing down.

Who’s the target of the attacks?

If you think that your small business is not a target due to its size, think again.

Here’s a sobering stat: Did you know that 31 percent of targeted attacks’ victims in 2012 are small and medium businesses?

That’s right – Symantec has reported that of all targeted attacks recorded, 31 percent are on SMBs – a 13 percent increase from 2011’s figure. Large organizations are still leading with 50 percent, but not by much.

Indeed, those figures can tell us a worrying trend: Once an issue for big corporations, today’s data breaches, spamming, phishing and other types of cyber attacks are also a major problem for small and medium businesses.

Let’s dig deeper in to the trends. Here is a series of infographics which can give you the big picture of the website security threat trends in 2013.

website security  infographic
Source: Symantec
website security  infographic
Source: Symantec

The figures above lead us to one big question: Are you really ready to thwart such threats?

Before you answer that question, consider these stats from the infographics, which can justify why there is a sense of urgency in securing your small business website:

  • What’s the average cost of cyber crime to businesses? Almost $600,000 in 2012, a 6 percent increase from last year’s figure
  • There is a whopping 42 percent increase in the number of cyber attacks in 2012
  • Social media phishing is a hot, new trend, increasing by 123 percent in 2012

We can assume that, in essence, the more you wait, the more vulnerable your business has become.

What to do?

Take action. There’s no better way in responding to website security threats than by taking action – in the right way. How? Symantec suggests the following:

1. Always consider yourself as a target to cyber attack. I’m not suggesting you that you should be paranoid, but the best way to enhance your website security is, firstly, by acknowledging that you are prone to such attack.

2. Understand your ‘enemies.’ Not only you who need to be knowledgeable when it comes to cyber attack, your business team should also understand what kind of attacks they are facing and how to deal with them. Your team should also be aware that not all clickable links on emails are created equal; some of them are real, and some others are just phishing efforts.

3. Use the right solutions. The technology you adopt in securing your website can be a game-changer. Website security solutions – like Symantec’s – can get you covered holistically.

Symantec offers more useful tips in dealing with cyber attacks in their report. I suggest you to download Symantec Website Security Threat Report 2013 (part 1 and 2) and please do let me know what you think of the trends and findings inside.