Why cyber attacks remain a threat to small business success

- May 1, 2023 2 MIN READ


“Cyber security is like having your first baby. You can injure it in many ways, and everyone has an opinion on your actions. Ultimately though, it requires a village to take care of it.” This was the analogy that Kate Pounder from the Tech Council used at a recent panel session during the COSBOA conference, writes The Digital Guide, Tracy Sheen.

At its core, a small business’ cyber security issue is that we need to have everything perfect 100 per cent of the time, whereas hackers only need to get it right once to create a trail of devastation.

The cyber landscape changes daily, and small business owners are not just relying on accounting systems and websites. They are constantly looking to adopt new technologies, apps and software platforms to make their businesses more efficient and profitable.

With around 50 per cent of metro-based businesses (and 70 per cent of all regional and rural businesses) managing their IT requirements in-house, the threat of an ‘extinction level’ event remains a real possibility.

Cyber security concerns are only growing

Identity fraud as a nefarious business model continues to grow within Australia, with the greater issue for those on the front line fighting the threats left trying to lift the lid on why Australia remains a target.

The belief of Narelle Devine, Chief Information Security Officer Asia Pacific, Telstra, is that the security industry needs to share the reasons ‘why’ Australia remains a target, in order to assist the small business community in understanding the real threat.

“In a nutshell, there is a need to make cyber security user-friendly,” Devine said.

The Tech Council believes that making cyber security insurance more affordable and accessible for the average small business owner will also make a big difference to the average Australian small or medium enterprise protecting themselves.

“Given that small to medium-sized business is the lynchpin to Australian supply chains, more needs to be done in this area,” shared Pounder. “Keep the to-do list short and allow small business owners to filter out the noise to action what is the highest priority.”

Both Pounder and Devine agreed that there was more the Government could be doing to incentivise ways businesses secure themselves, their clients and their supply chains online.

“Look at what’s important for your business and invest in that. Cyber security can be expensive, so small businesses need to get bang for their buck.”

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