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American small businesses are not ready for cyber attacks

Some of the hottest cyberattacks in the United States are said to have occurred in Russia. This includes the 2021 attack on the Colonial Pipeline, the largest fuel pipeline in the United States, the 2020 SolarWinds attack, and the 2016 Democratic National Committee hack. National Committee.

Since Russia invaded Ukraine in January this year U.S. government warned The high risk of cyberattacks that Russia could use to pull the United States into direct conflict. Despite the growing threat, small business owners aren’t worried about potential cyberattacks and are less prepared to deal with cyberattacks than they were a year ago. Hmm.

CNBC | SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey checks in to over 2,000 small business owners quarterly to understand the outlook for the overall business environment and the health of their business.of Latest surveyOnly 5% of small business owners report that cybersecurity is the greatest risk to their business today.

Quarterly, the number that cybersecurity is the number one risk is stable and the lowest priority of the five surveyed. At the same time Inflation is the biggest risk Their investment in business has increased from 31% to 38%, maintaining the top position in terms of risk. Both supply chain disruptions and the number of reports of Covid-19 as the greatest risk have decreased.

This latest round of small business surveys is the first survey after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but international events have not had a visible impact on US small business sentiment.

Cybersecurity is consistently ranked as a retrofit for most small business owners when conducting risk assessments.

CNBC | SurveyMonkey SME Survey 2nd Quarter 2022

That’s not their biggest concern, but four in ten small business owners are very or somewhat concerned that their business will be the victim of a cyberattack within the next 12 months. It states. This trend has been stable for four consecutive quarters and has not changed at all since Russia invaded Ukraine.

The smallest microenterprise is the least concerned about cyberattacks. 33% of owners with 0-4 employees are concerned that they will experience a cyberattack within a year, compared to 61% of owners of small businesses with 50 or more employees. ..

Few small business owners rate cyber threats as their greatest business risk, and less than half consider it a concern, yet the majority are confident in their ability to respond to cyber attacks. I’m waiting. As in the previous quarter, 6 out of 10 small business owners are very or somewhat confident that they can quickly resolve cyberattacks on their businesses as needed.

Cyber ​​disconnection between business owner and customer

This lack of general concern among small business owners is different from the sentiment among the general public.of SurveyMonkey’s own pollingThree-quarters of Americans say they expect US companies to experience major cyberattacks within the next 12 months.

Consumer expectations for cyber protection vary from industry to industry. The majority of the general public is convinced that banks (71%), healthcare providers (64%), and email providers (55%) are equipped with equipment to protect them from cybersecurity threats. It states that it is. On the other hand, only 32% expect their social media platform to be ready.

Similar results can be seen in the area of ​​SMEs. Small business owners in the financial and insurance industries are most confident that they can respond quickly to cyber attacks. More than 7 out of 10 say they can fight the attack. Among people in the arts, entertainment and recreation industries, that number is reduced to 50%.

This is important. Cyber ​​attacks, even if resolved quickly, can have a long-term negative impact on the business. Consumers do not want to be victims of cybersecurity attacks and are cautious about trusting companies that have been compromised in the past. According to a SurveyMonkey survey, 55% of people in the United States are unlikely to continue trading with brands that are victims of cyberattacks.

In order for SMEs to truly prepare, they need to take more concrete steps. Less than half said they installed antivirus or malware software, strengthened their passwords, or backed up their files to an external hard drive to protect their business from potential cyber attacks. Only one-third of each have automatic software updates or multi-factor authentication enabled. Only a quarter have a virtual private network (VPN) installed.

These are the basic actions that most American companies consider to be table stakes, but they are certainly much more costly to implement in a small business environment. SMEs that do not take cyber threats seriously are at risk of losing their customers in the event of a real threat.

American small businesses are not ready for cyber attacks

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