“Nah, Cyber’s not for my business, it’s too small”

I recall a local business meeting. You know the ones. You have 2-minutes to pitch your business to the rest of the room. Afterwards a lady came up to me and said, ‘what you do sounds fascinating, but it doesn’t apply to me’.

Having heard this before, I asked her what she did. ‘I’m a wedding photographer’, she proudly announces. ‘Just me in the business, and I use a Mac, so a cyber-criminal wouldn’t be interested in me?’

We talked a little more about her business. She revealed last weekend was a bank-holiday, and she’d done a wedding on the Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. So, I say, ‘what would happen if you’d turned on the Mac Tuesday morning, and you saw this message:

And those 4 brides may never see the photos from the most important day of their lives?’

I have to say I felt a little guilty as the poor lady went white.

But the point was made. Cyber-criminals do not care if you’re big or small, hold state secrets or photos of your kids. We all have things we value and that’s what a cyber-criminal can use to get to us!

What is a cybercriminal?

Pictures in the media, and watching Elliott in Mr Robot, paint an image of deeply technical individuals in dark rooms typing in complex lines of code.

Not anymore – you don’t need to be a technical whizz, you just need to know how to manipulate people.

 

What are you doing to protect your business?

The hardest thing is starting. We question ourselves. Does it apply to me? Could my business be spending time and money better elsewhere? Do I understand it enough? It could be expensive?

A few surprising statistics from the local Police Cyber Crime teams:

  • £1.3M lost to victims of cybercrime in Hertfordshire
  • £18K average lost by a business through hacked social media/email accounts in Bedfordshire
  • £47K average lost by a business by hacking an individual in the company in Bedfordshire
  • £846K average loss for a hacked server in Hertfordshire

 Getting started can be simple

As mentioned above, these types of crimes target our people, as what they consider easy access points. So, it’s all about understanding, what you have of value and how the criminal might trick you into giving it to them.

Once your employees understand these two things protecting them can be simple. For example, if we go back to our first story of the Wedding Photographer. If she had a process of immediately backing her photographs up on an encrypted USB stick then she’d already be significantly reducing her risk, quickly and cheaply.

Free cyber workshop

To mark National Cyber Security Awareness Month Layer 8 will be offering 2-free workshops for local charities and businesses.

The charity day will be held on the 29th October and the Business event on the 6th November.

To register your interest email us at enquiries@layer8ltd.co.uk

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