The rise of flexible work policies Even after the pandemic ends, most companies are extending flexible or remote work policies, and cyberhackers are shifting their methods of operation accordingly....
As technology and networking have advanced, connectivity has become increasingly easy, allowing you to engage with people from all over the world. That has led to a growth of personal relationships and global business.
That increased connectivity has also opened the door for more online threats. Cybersecurity threats and cybercrime can have some significant effects on individuals and businesses alike. Cybercrime continues to be on the rise. If you’re a business online, you likely have to deal with cybercrime in direct or indirect ways. Considering everyone and every organization in the modern world is online, you can imagine the importance of online security measures. Read on to learn more about the impacts of cyber attacks on businesses.
What is Cybercrime?
Cybercrime refers to a broad range of criminal practices involving a computer and a network. While it can be easy to imagine cybercrime as a lone hacker typing furiously on a keyboard, cybercrime is much broader and more organized than most people realize. Some cybercrimes and cyber criminals are state-sponsored, while others can potentially come from competing organizations.
Cybercrime itself can take numerous forms. Malware, which includes viruses and trojans, is the most prominent type of cyberattack. It can destroy files, harm network functionality, and open up other network security vulnerabilities. Other cyberattacks can include:
- Cyber espionage
- Phishing, pharming, and other forms of fraud and identity theft
What’s even more intriguing is that these crimes (and cybercrimes in general) are constantly evolving and adapting to the growth of new technologies and new cyber security measures.
The Effects of Cybercrime
It is important to understand how to avoid security breaches because cybercrime can have a massive impact on just about every aspect of business.
Cyberattacks can result in some severe financial impact on your business. While some of this can, of course, come from stolen funds or bank information, the costs involved can come from other related issues. For example, a cyberattack can completely shut down your network, which can cause you to lose work and make every internal process come to a screeching halt until you can bring everything back online.
Businesses that have suffered some sort of network data breach also have to spend money on repairing the system and recovering any lost data. Installing new security measures and protocols can also take ample time and money. The system has to be constantly tested, monitored, and updated constantly, which can add further expense, but it’s also a necessary cost.
Every business wants to be seen as dependable, trustworthy, and easy to reach. A business that can protect its own system, network, and devices is easy to trust, especially if transactions involve sensitive information. A cyberattack can take all of that trust away and ruin your reputation. That can result in lost customers, lost sales, and lost profits.
Even more detrimental, a tarnished reputation can cause fissures in other business relationships. You may lose vendors or suppliers, and any partners or investors may decide to pull out.
Related to a damaged reputation, a cyberattack could result in stolen or damaged intellectual property, which could include marketing campaigns, business expansion plans, or other proprietary strategies for your business. A cybercriminal could show those plans or strategies to your competition, rendering those ideas useless. This type of cyber breach would also damage your business growth and hamper any future revenue.
While a cyberattack would ostensibly require legal action, the attack itself could result in legal consequences. Laws for data protection and privacy often require you to properly manage all of your personal data, including that of your employees, clients, customers, and vendors. If you haven’t implemented the right security measures, any sensitive data that is accidentally or deliberately compromised can potentially result in fines and penalties. You are also legally required to inform anyone affected by a cyberattack as soon as possible. Failure to do so can result in massive fines and further reputational damage. The exact laws will vary from state to state.
A cyberattack can leave you feeling extremely vulnerable about your business. You have to rethink how your company collects and stores its data, which can mean re-strategizing your entire business operation. Clients and customers prefer knowing how you handle personal information and security issues, and you need to be ready to be more transparent and upfront about how your organization conducts its everyday business. That’s ultimately beneficial for everyone, but it can be daunting and intimidating, especially if it’s different from how you’ve run your business before.
As the world grows more in its interconnectivity, it’s good to embrace the potential to meet and collaborate with others. At the same time, it’s important to implement robust security protocols to protect your information and client data. Consider working with a managed security service like MRC or a SOC team to protect your business.