Online trading is a minefield for SMEs

Data loss is seen as the biggest business risk to SME’s says Ross Walker, head of SMB UK & Ireland, at security supplier Symantec.

In reaction to a post on this blog last week Ross has given us the benefit of his experience.

Also see Symantec’s latest Global Information Protection Survey that pinpoints some of the dangers SMEs face online by clicking here.

Here is a post by him:

“Trading online can be a minefield for SMEs and e-commerce fraud is just one area where small businesses can come unstuck. The Internet gives cyber criminals a cloak of invisibility; since they don’t have to be there in person to make a fraudulent purchase or to steal information from a small company.

Confidence is key and customers need to know they are dealing with reputable organisations which take security seriously. As we’ve seen all too often, data breaches and data loss can happen easily if the right precautions and policies are not in place. This can lead to losses for both the company’s finances and reputation with existing and potential customers.

Symantec’s Global Information Protection Survey revealed last month that data loss and cyber attacks now rank as the top SME business risks. Of the SMEs asked, 73 per cent said that they had suffered a cyber attack in the past year. All those that fell victim suffered financially, through factors such as lost productivity, and in more serious cases through loss or theft of data.

By implementing robust, integrated, procedures and technology to protect against current risks, SMEs will reap both short and long-term benefits and maintain the competitive advantage of doing business better online.

Simple steps that SMEs can take to protect themselves against online risks include:

– Educate employees
– Safeguard important business information
– Implement an effective backup and recovery plan
– Secure email and web assets”

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