Not sure what’s fact and what’s fiction when it comes to data breaches? Check out the top five data breach myths we’ve heard of…and the reality behind them!
Data Breach Myth 1: Only Major Companies get Targeted for Data Breaches
Reality: Any company of any size can be the target of a cyber-attack. We often only see news reports about data breaches from major companies which leads to data breach myths like this one. However, that doesn’t mean small companies are in the clear. In fact, 58 percent of companies that get their data stolen are small businesses. Basically, if your company has an online presence and collects data from customers in any way, you could be susceptible to a data breach.
Data Breach Myth 2: Cybersecurity is Only the IT Department’s Problem
Reality: Employees in all departments can establish a Security First mindset and help keep important company information safe from data breaches. In fact, it’s often employees not in the IT department who are accidentally making the company vulnerable to an attack or a data breach. This comes down to lack of security awareness training and resources. Many employees aren’t aware of the tell-tale signs of a phishing email and end up clicking infected links or opening bad attachments. This can easily open the door to malware, which can infiltrate the entire system rather than just affecting one employee. For this reason, it’s helpful for companies to teach all employees the basics on how to avoid data breaches, starting with security awareness training in the workplace.
Data Breach Myth 3: All you Need is a Strong Password
Reality: A strong password is helpful, but it won’t stop all data breaches. It can also be helpful to use two-factor authentication. You can add another layer of protection by requiring users to confirm a phone number via text message or requiring a fingerprint on top of entering their strong password. Although two-factor authentication can be helpful, it is not fool-proof. You should also implement cyber-security training to keep your organization educated and ahead of the threat.
Data Breach Myth 4: Data Breaches Only Cause Financial Damage
Reality: The financial and reputational damage caused by data breaches can affect companies for years. Companies might face fines and lawsuits that require them to pay out money to the victims of the data breach over time. They might also have to invest more money in cybersecurity training and defenses after the data breach. In addition to financial loss, companies often must deal with a loss of reputation and trust in their company. As a result, companies might lose business and in some cases be forced to shut down.
Data Breach Myth 5: It’s Possible to be Completely Cyber Secure
Reality: Most security professionals would agree that it’s almost impossible to be totally bulletproof when it comes to cyber-attacks. However, cyber-risk is best managed through continual threat education, security awareness training, and involvement from all levels of leadership.
Now that you know the most common data breach myths—and the reality behind them—you can work on improving your company’s cybersecurity strategy. You can start by arranging for security awareness training for your employees so everyone at your company can work together to prevent cyber-attacks.
The original version of this article was first published on Inspired eLearning.