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Chris Halcon | 24 Jul 2012 | 0 comments

The number of targeted attacks against SMBs has more than doubled in the last six months. This alarming new statistic combined with the fact that many SMBs are unaware of the threat was the key driver behind our latest SMB Twitter chat.

Last week, Symantec’s SMB security experts, Kevin Haley and Andy Singer, engaged with Small Business Trends’ Editor-in-Chief Anita Campbell for a Twitter chat about targeted attacks and SMBs. The chat covered a variety of topics including the likelihood of an attack, common types of attacks and how to mitigate threats.

The chat drew more than 100 participants which included SMB owners and thought leaders who discussed the current threat landscape for SMBs. The chat produced more than 800 Tweets and for the first time since we started holding SMB chats, the hashtag #SMBchat...

Grant M Symantec.cloud | 16 Jul 2012 | 1 comment

Coming off a nearly week-long outage in the Northeast that left more than 2 million households/businesses without power, disaster preparedness is certainly top-of-mind for individuals and business owners. Just recently, I read about the 10 states most at risk for a disaster, as identified by Kiplinger.com, and interestingly the seven states suffering this latest disaster did not make the top 10.

It goes to show that no matter where you are, as a small business owner you need to be prepared. After all, downtime equals lost business – 29 percent of small businesses lost revenue and 52 percent lost productivity due to a typical outage, according to Symantec’s 2012 SMB Disaster Preparedness Survey. As a small business, this is a risk you can’t afford to take.

We’...

Chris Halcon | 13 Jul 2012 | 0 comments

If you think you’re too small for hackers to direct their malware your way, think again. The number of targeted attacks against SMBs, where cybercriminals specifically target organizations using customized malware and social engineering, has doubled in the first six months of 2012. Many smaller businesses find themselves vulnerable to these attacks because they have fewer defenses and limited budgets.

Join Symantec’s security experts and small business expert Anita Campbell of Small Business Trends on Thursday, July 19 at 1:00 p.m. PT / 4:00 p.m. ET to chat about the latest threats to SMBs and how to protect your company from targeted attacks.

SMBs need to take steps to educate employees about the latest internet-based threats and how to prevent them, while implementing technologies to protect their valuable information. Our SMB experts will cover the following:

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andysinger | 10 Jul 2012 | 0 comments

Symantec’s latest Internet Security Threat Report Volume 17 showed that 2011 saw an increase in targeted attacks, and  18 percent of these targeted attacks were directed at businesses with 250 or fewer employees. Now that we’re halfway through the new year, how do things look for SMBs? According to the latest Symantec Intelligence Report – not good.

Targeted attacks still increasing

After reaching a record high in December of 154 attacks per day, daily attacks dipped briefly in January before returning to similar levels in February. For the most part, the daily attack average remained around this level for the first half of 2012 resulting in an average increase in targeted attacks per day of around 24 percent for the first half of 2012.

Attacks against SMBs double

Over the last six months, the number of attacks against SMBs has doubled, jumping to 36 percent compared to the 18 percent we saw just...

Monica Girolami | 26 Jun 2012 | 1 comment

In business today, information is becoming more and more important. However, the costs and amount of information businesses deal with is huge and growing at a rapid pace. On average, enterprises spend $38 million annually on information, while SMBs spend $332,000. However, the yearly cost per employee for SMBs is a lot higher at $3,670, versus $3,297 for enterprise. Even more interesting, a recent survey reveals that information is expected to grow by 178 percent for SMBs in the next year. Without the advantage of economies of scale, small businesses need to rethink how they spend money on protecting their information.

In order for your business to run smoothly, you need to understand what information you have, be able to access it when and where you need it, and – above all – protect it. Symantec has just published its first ever 2012 State of Information Survey which looks into the value of information to...

Dal Gemmell | 10 May 2012 | 0 comments

Careless employees continue to cost companies millions. That’s one of the key takeaways from the 2011 Cost of a Data Breach Study released last month by Symantec and the Ponemon Institute, which provides valuable insight into the data breaches that occurred during the past year.

Negligent insiders were the top source of data breaches in 2011, causing 39 percent of all breaches in the study.  Just behind negligence, malicious attacks caused 37 percent of all breaches and were the most expensive type of breach, averaging $222 per lost record.

Overall, the average organizational cost of a data breach was $5.5 million last year, and the cost per lost or stolen record was $194. It’s important to remember that although there was a reported decrease in data breach costs, the financial consequences of data breaches are still very significant, especially for an SMB.

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Chris Halcon | 27 Apr 2012 | 0 comments

Save the Date for our Twitter Chat (hashtag #SMBChat)

Mobile devices have the potential to both supercharge and invade SMBs.  Employees use these devices to surf the Web, check emails, access business critical applications and to be more productive no matter their location. But this enhanced productivity comes with risks – lost or stolen devices and mobile malware are significant concerns for small businesses. 

Join Symantec’s SMB mobility experts and small business expert Anita Campbell of Small Business Trends on Wednesday, May 2 at 4:00 p.m. PT / 7:00 p.m. ET to chat about how SMBs can mitigate risks while leveraging mobile technologies.     

SMBs must protect their business information regardless of where it resides – whether on the road or in the office....

andysinger | 26 Apr 2012 | 0 comments

According to Apple, nearly one in four computers sold in the United States is a Mac. The Flashback virus, which targets a Java vulnerability in Mac OS for which Apple has since issued a security update, spread quickly and more viruses are sure to follow. SMBs that use Macs to fuel their businesses need to take the appropriate steps to protect your information. 

How did we get to this point? Imagine you grew up in a small town where you never had to lock your doors. This town is tucked away in the countryside, where surely no criminals would ever care to travel. But over time, more and more people move to your little paradise, seeking escape from life in the big city. When you come home one evening and see that you’ve been robbed, you finally realize that your little town has changed forever. It can no longer lie...

Grant M Symantec.cloud | 03 Apr 2012 | 0 comments

Feeling the pinch? These days, all of us are looking for ways to trim budgets and our operating expenses. After all, who doesn’t like to save money? One pain point that consumers, enterprises and small businesses share is their energy consumption.  But it’s not just the heat of summer or the cold of winter that ratchets up the kilowatts. If you are an SMB, your IT systems have a significant impact on your energy consumption. The good news is that there are things small businesses can do to make their energy bill more bearable year-round. 

Most SMBs don’t realize just how big of a footprint their IT equipment has on the environment and how much they could save by reducing it. You can make laudable changes without compromising the quality and performance of your equipment or processes. In fact, it’s not hard to have the best of both worlds: high product performance and low energy use.

Below are some tips for fostering energy-efficient...

Dal Gemmell | 11 Oct 2011 | 0 comments

It’s fairly easy for SMBs to tune out the seemingly daily headlines of massive data breaches—many SMBs simply think that a data breach is not a small business problem. But, it’s not just large corporations on the receiving end of targeted attacks aimed at stealing valuable business information; SMBs are the unfortunate victims of their fair share of data breaches too. And it’s costing them to the tune of $214 per lost record.

If even the big guys are falling victim, what’s an SMB, with limited budgets and fewer IT resources, to do to protect against such costly attacks? SMBs, it’s time for action. As the age-old sports mantra goes, ‘the best defense is a good offense.’ And, National Cyber Security Awareness month is the time to make sure your offensive line is in shape.

Symantec recommends the following to get you playing...