Intentional attacks are only part of the treat to small business network security. A substantial proportion of data disruption is caused inadvertently by team members simply charging their mobile phone on a workplace computer’s USB port.

HUNTSVILLE, AL, February 01, 2019 /24-7PressRelease/ — Small business is said to be the backbone of the U.S. economy. It represents about half of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product, and that half is the more agile half.

Even eight to 10 years ago, the small business percentage of Gross Domestic Product was hovering around 49.9%, and since the 2010 census, there’s every reason to assess that the percentage has risen during an unprecedented period of slow, steady economic growth. The agility we speak of takes several forms, and few of them could be feasible without small business network security.

Job creation is one example. Since 1995, two-thirds of new jobs were created by small businesses, and those jobs make up about 43% of U.S. payroll dollars, driving the consumer spending that is so vital to the U.S. economy. Small businesses, too, have proven to be the best avenue for engaging diversity in the U.S. economy. To begin with, more than 36% of small businesses are owned by women, and at least 10% by veterans. Minority owners oversee at least 15% of small businesses – and growing rapidly. Would the broad shoulders of our economic growth be possible without effective small business network security? Likely not.

Innovation? Small businesses lead hands-down. A study conducted by the U.S. Small Business Administration concluded that small businesses produce 16 times more patents per employee than large corporations and they account for 43% of high-tech employment. Considering the priority of privacy in developing innovations profitably, these patents would be hard to imagine without small business network security.

Protecting the Fundamental Asset

The dispersion of computing power that came with the personal computer’s application to the workplace, the access to computing for team members at all levels of an organization, the insights and speed that resulted, are surely essential elements in the story of small business, and in its increasing importance to the economy. With that dispersal of computing power and access, the greatly expanded risk that came with it made small business network security as vital to operations as a phone line was in the 20th century.

The reasons are many, and they grow and multiply every day.

Threats to Small Business Network Security

Botnet attacks are among the least conspicuous threats to small business network security, but they can cause the most widespread damage. When your data network and digital information system are invaded by a bot, your computers actually become enslaved, working secretly to propagate whatever viral malfunction the attackers devise.

At least three global outbreaks of ransomware occurred in 2017, causing $5 billion worth of damages, and the prospect of being held up by a digital bandit requiring payment for the release of your essential data is among the most feared consequence today of allowing a lapse in small business network security. In 2018, a list of known ransomware attacks began with 11 reported in January alone.

Another key small business network security trend observed in the current Microsoft Security Intelligence Report is that of new attacker methods. Cybersecurity attackers continually seek “low-friction” ways of infiltrating organizations and their data systems. Attackers are looking for the quietest, easiest way into a digital information system, a measure that might seem redundant given that we think of cybersecurity taking place in invisible, “non-physical” space. Yet, ironically, the most effective low-friction method of attack is quite visible: unguarded data ports and network connectors. In fact, this approach was the preferred “attack vector” in two of the most significant cyber-espionage and cyber-sabotage operations ever conducted by nation-states.

Unguarded data ports and network connectors are still unsurpassed for the ease and simplicity of sidestepping the non-physical small business network security that has been installed via network surveillance software. What’s more, a sinister intent is not always the origin. Research and real-world experience demonstrate that an organization’s own team members don’t hesitate to insert anonymous, “found” USB flash drives into the data port of a workplace computer system. Even the best-trained, most-disciplined teams are not immune. In fact, trained security agents proved to insert unknown flash drives into the “secure” systems they use at work about half the time. When the organization’s logo was added to the unknown flash drive, the percent of time the flash drive was inserted into a USB port increased. In another study, the use of found flash drives was seen to be greater than 100%. In other words, not only were practically all the devices plugged in, but many were inserted more than once.

Yes, intentional attacks are only part of the treat to small business network security. A substantial proportion of data disruption is caused inadvertently by team members simply charging their mobile phone on a workplace computer’s USB port or using an infected external hard drive to take work home. Normal human behavior like that is leveraged by cyber attackers to spread damage and disruption. No security perimeter is complete without the physical security devices that can block them.

These small business network security devices are abundant and readily available at The Connectivity Center, whose mission it is to protect those physical points of entry that that turn PCs into information systems, the ports and connectors where the most damaging and historically impactful cyber-attacks have been perpetrated.

About The Connectivity Center

The Connectivity Center is a supplier of some of the leading physical cyber security and AV connection technologies. The company is especially known for its Smart Keeper series – a portfolio of physical data security products. The Connectivity Center brand prides itself in quality, value, variety, and versatility. We want to be a one stop shop for most of your connectivity needs and we love to serve our partners in this evolving industry.

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