The havoc caused by someone maliciously entering online and IT systems by hacking and other cybercrime is immediate and costly, for business owners, customers and suppliers throughout the economy.
Around 25 per cent of Australian small to medium enterprises experienced a cybercrime in 2017 1 . In a 2017 survey, small business operators rated cybercrime as the third biggest risk to their business 2.
For a big business with access to extensive IT support and resourcing, a cyber security incident can be a bad day for business. For a small business, such as a café, medical practice or tradesperson, with tight running costs and much fewer staff, it can be their last day of business.
The theft of funds and assets, including intellectual property, can be devastating, leaving hefty remediation bills and irreparable damage to a business’s customer base, reputation and bottom line.
The ACSC knows that having good cyber security protection in place is as essential as good physical security. It’s even more important when we consider that most small businesses in Australia today rely on some form of digital connectivity to operate.
The ACSC receives reports on a daily basis from business owners and operators around the country who’ve been hit by a cyber security incident. From paying false invoices to scammers, through to staff inadvertently clicking on suspicious links that bring a business’s entire system down – the reports are alarming and growing.
In this constantly changing environment where more and more businesses are being hit by cybercrime and more business leaders and workers are talking about ‘cyber security’, we are keen for the small business community to tell us what cyber security means to them.
- Norton by Symantec 2017, Norton SMB Cyber Security Survey: Australia 2017, p.6, http://now.symassets.com/content/dam/content/en-au/collaterals/datasheets/cybersecurity-simplified.pdf
- NSW Small Business Commissioner, 2017, Cyber Aware: Report into the Perceptions of, attitudes to and preparedness for Cybercrime amongst Australia’s small and medium-sized enterprises, p.14 https://www.smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/134933/Cyber-Aware-full-report.pdf