Small businesses can benefit greatly by using the latest technologies to improve operational efficiency and innovation, but they can also open the door to a host of headaches. In the Symantec 2014 Small Business Trends Report, the leading IT-security company predicts continued consumer focus on privacy, and a growing “Internet of Things” (IOT) connected to more and more mobile devices which will have a direct impact on small businesses and they way they do business.
“Security researchers have already demonstrated attacks against smart televisions, medical equipment, baby monitors and security cameras. Many of the companies building gadgets that connect to the Internet don’t even realize they have an oncoming security problem and therefore don’t have a friendly end-user method to patch these new vulnerabilities or notify customers when there is a vulnerability.”
“From scary headline news to a much-needed wake-up call,” Symantec writes, not referring to anything in particular. But consumers focus will be on privacy in 201, the security company concludes. warning that many small businesses may wake up to a complete new reality.
“In 2014, we expect to see privacy protection emerge as a feature in new and existing products. But this new feature will inevitably spark a debate on whether or not these features actually provide real or meaningful privacy protection,” Symantec writes in their “2014 Small Business Trends Report,” released in January.
Internet of Vulnerabilities
I think I would emphasise this one, thou:
“Our devices are getting smarter and so must we. With millions of devices connected to the Internet—and in many cases running an embedded operating system—expect more hackers to be hacking in 2014. Security researchers have already demonstrated attacks against smart televisions, medical equipment, baby monitors and security cameras. Many of the companies building gadgets that connect to the Internet don’t even realize they have an oncoming security problem and therefore don’t have a friendly end-user method to patch these new vulnerabilities or notify customers when there is a vulnerability. This poses serious and potentially debilitating problem for small businesses.”
Trouble with social networking
“New social networks attract scammers and cybercriminals the more they grow in popularity. Consider Instagram, which now boasts more than 130 million users. Small businesses are leveraging the visual social network to share artistic photos and promotions to drive engagement, but some spammers are taking advantage of this trend with gift card offers to get sensitive information.”
Here’s the Symantec small business security advice for 2014:
Consider the information you’re collecting on your consumers and whether it is necessary. Be transparent about why you’re collecting certain data, and you’ll establish a more trusting relationship with your customers.
Consider the sensitivity of information accessed and stored via wearable tech in the workplace. Establish an “Internet of Things” employee policy about what can and cannot be used in the office or used to access your network.
Carefully consider what social communities best fit your brand before creating a presence on all the latest social networks.
Full summary @ Symantec.com
And – by the way – here’s the latest Symantec Intelligence report:
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