What Entrepreneurs Should Know About Cybercrime and Startups
If you’re running a startup, then there are a million and one things to keep in mind. The life of an entrepreneur can be stressful, but many people see this as their way of building a business and brand for themselves. It’s a popular field, especially in the changing business climate we see happening nationally and worldwide. If anything, now is a great time to build a startup and go after your professional goals.
That said, a few elements of running a business can get left by the wayside when starting a new venture. One factor that can sometimes feel silly to consider at the start is cybersecurity. When it’s just you and a few other employees working on getting a business going, who is really going to target your data and information? As it turns out, startups are highly susceptible to cybercrime for this very reason. It’s tough to manage every aspect of a business from the get-go, but these crucial lessons about cybercrime and startups should show you that security is no area to bypass or skimp on in the early days of your endeavor.
Crucial Lessons about Cybercrime and Startups
When an entrepreneur comes from a cybersecurity background, they know first hand the threats that exist in the digital world for businesses of all sizes. Overall, cybersecurity grew in 2020, thanks to more online activity for companies and individuals. With many hackers eyeing vulnerable targets, a startup without comprehensive cybersecurity measures in place can be prime for the picking. So, here are a few lessons to know about cybercrime and running a startup that might come in handy.
- Controlling Access to Your Data is Everything
When it comes to establishing how and where you access company data, be aware of the places and people that might leave you vulnerable. If you operate with a primarily remote workforce, then encrypted cloud storage is going to be essential. For some startups, there may only be one or two people actually working for the company. This doesn’t necessarily mean you’re free from danger, however.
When you bring clients and vendors into the mix as you grow your business, your data is likely in the hands of these outside parties in one way or another. Whether they log-in to a CRM you use or regularly share files with you, your data can be at risk. The best protection against these dangers is always to know who you work with and trust established, well-known partners. Likewise, investing in data encryption, authenticators, and other protective measures is a must.
- Cybercrime Occurs in All Industries
Tech startups might seem like a prominent place for hackers to steal information or data, but it can happen to anyone. A huge, booming market is the eCommerce industry, which sees record growth in 2020 thanks to more online shoppers. While this growth could mean big things for your startup, it can also lead to a lapse in security measures. When you have a customer base primarily operating online through eCommerce channels, your ability to protect your website and users is crucial.
When a startup early in their business experiences the loss of customer data, that can taint the company in a big way. The eCommerce industry isn’t the only area we see cybercrime occur either. Any time you are operating finances and services online, you are at risk if an intelligent hacker knows your weak points. Cybersecurity is crucial if there is an online element to your business, which, let’s face it, is almost all businesses in 2020.
- Understand the Weight of a Data Breach
On a more big picture note, there’s a good chance some entrepreneurs might not understand what a data breach could mean for your company. That’s not bad to admit to yourself if cybersecurity isn’t your background or strong suit. So, what happens in a data breach, and what can you do to avoid them?
Essentially, hackers target either organizational data or customer data to do everything from stealing identities, collect sensitive information, and make a profit off the data from other criminals. Everyone involved in a data breach stands to lose money, but the company responsible for a lapse in comprehensive cybersecurity measures can take the biggest hit. If you don’t adequately protect your data and your clients and customers, you could stand to face lawsuits and many trials that limit your ability to run a business. It’s a big reason most seasoned entrepreneurs will tell you not to skimp on cybersecurity.
- Investing in Cybersecurity is Cheaper than the Alternative
Overall, expenses and revenue are likely the number one thing on your mind as a new startup. While spending money on methods to protect your budding business might not seem all that practical in the early stages of the entrepreneur process, it’s a must-have for any startup. With a secure and robust data network, you can avoid the hefty price of a data breach for any information related to you or your customers. Likewise, you can use cybersecurity as a selling point when presenting your business to potential clients.
Entrepreneurs who have successfully launched businesses know the importance of cybersecurity. Cybercrime continues to rise in prevalence and damage done to individuals and businesses, and cybersecurity services are a fraction of the cost you would face pending a data breach. Plus, it saves you from the headache of dealing with the whole mess of stolen information. Ensure your startup is on the right track with proper measures to fight cybercrime; you won’t regret it!
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