In its 2013 Data Breach Investigations Report, Verizon Enterprise found that nearly three in four cybersecurity breaches (74%) to small businesses are “crimes of opportunity” that occur because a hacker notices and exploits a weakness in the system: the cyber equivalent of a robber seeing a window propped open and a wallet on the sill.
The report also shows that nearly half of these breaches (48%) result from basic mistakes by non-technical employees with no expertise in in data security.
To protect themselves against financial losses from stolen or compromised client information, more and more firms are carrying cyber liability coverage. However, a preventive approach that focuses on beefing up IT security can play a key role in minimizing costly claims from data breaches– which helps keeps premiums under control and reduces the time, expense, and hassle of litigation from angry clients.
Ted Devine, CEO of TechInsurance (Allen, TX), recommends that businesses reduce this risk exposure by going “back to the basics.”
- Provide training. Make sure that non-tech employees understand and implement best practices for storing data, sharing files, and transporting hardware.
- Encourage password security measures. According to the Verizon Enterprises report, more than three in four data breaches (76%) take place because a hacker is able to guess a password. The solution: create strong passwords and update them regularly.
- Use antivirus software.
- Encrypt sensitive data and limit access to it.
- Set up protocols for off-premises work.
For more information, see the article “Workers’ Electronic Devices Pose Risks for Employers” in this newsletter).
If you’d like a complimentary review of your company’s data security procedures, just give us a call.