Small Businesses Urged to Protect Themselves against Cybercrime

Posted on 27 June, 2012 by Neil Bird

News from the US should serve as a reminder to small businesses to ensure they are protected from the threat of hacking which is increasingly carried out by sophisticated cybercriminals.

While large companies have taken measures to defend themselves, many small businesses leave themselves open to the theft of data and corporate account takeovers by assuming that it will never happen to them. Even worse, many mistakenly assume that their standard commercial property business insurance covers them against such losses.

Golden State Bridge, a construction company based in California suffered losses of more than $125,000 when cybercriminals hacked into its bank account. The hackers made two transactions using the office manager’s user name and password, diverting cash to other bank accounts in several locations.

Computer security experts say these crimes are becoming increasingly common and small businesses are particularly at risk as many lack firewalls and monitoring systems.  It is estimated that more than 10 per cent of US small businesses have been the victims of cybercrime with losses totalling over $2 billion.

Because Golden State Bridge had been hacked previously they had taken out commercial property business insurance against cybercrime and fraudulent bank transfers.  However not all small businesses are covered.

“It’s very rare that policies have them,” said Golden State’s chief financial officer Ann Talbot.  “I’ve talked to brokers who tell me only one in 10 business customers ask for it, and it’s cents on the dollar.”

UK small businesses should take heed because cybercrime is also on the rise on this side of the Atlantic. Only recently it was revealed that one UK business had lost a significant amount of money as a result of intellectual property theft. Many of the attacks originate from Russia and China and MI5 is currently investigating several incidents.

Peter Castle of insurance brokers Bluefin warns that commercial property business cover should be elevated to reflect this growing threat. He said; “Many policies provide cover against physical loss or damage but fail to protect effectively against intangible assets such as electronic data.”

Is your small business covered against the threat of cybercrime? Has your business ever been hacked? Share your stories with us below.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Recent Posts

The best places to stay on the Riviera

The latest property data has identified Newquay as the fastest property seller’s market in the UK

Investing in your garden can increase your property’s value

French Riviera temping high-end homebuyers

How can the ownership rights of my commercial property impact a business sale?

Should I incorporate virtual property viewings permanently?

Investment expected to increase across Asia-Pacific in 2021

UK property industry slows as the conclusion of tax break looms

BNP Paribas cautioned investors on Friday as debt-trading bonanza that increased its earnings this past year

Over 300,000 property purchases fell through in 2020 – we show the most frequent motives and the best way to get your house sale back on track

House Prices in the Capital Surpass £500,000

Optimism from the Bank of England’s chief economist

The most expensive commercial properties.

Businesses operating from shared premises will miss out on grants

BA cuts 12,000 jobs, unions hit back

Media Streaming Service See Record Subscriptions