Since the announcement of the Target security breach in December of 2013, a string of similar intrusions have affected retailers including Home Depot, SuperValu, Kmart, Goodwill, UPS Stores, Dairy Queen, and Jimmy Johns. In fact, SuperValu announced on September 29, 2014 that they had experienced a second intrusion separate from their August 14, 2014 announcement. It seems that no retailer is safe, not even a retailer that has been previously breached.
Common Theme in the Data Breaches
The press has reported many details about each breach, laying out the brand name retailers that everyone is familiar with. However, there is one truth that is not made apparent in any of the news stories about the breaches at Goodwill, UPS Stores, Dairy Queen, and Jimmy Johns. These are retail franchises. Each breached location belongs to an entrepreneurial small business owner.
Protecting Your Small Business from a Breach
These individual business owners do not rely on corporate IT staff but instead utilize their own IT knowledge or perhaps employ a local IT person to keep the business running. In either case, the small business owner may not have the security skills to keep the business safe from hackers. Typically, the small business owner cannot implement payment card industry guidelines that are required if the business accepts credit cards. When the business cannot adhere to PCI DSS requirements and Card Industry Security Operating Procedures, the business is especially vulnerable to hackers.
Recent breaches show that cyber criminals will target any business regardless of size. Just like the mega retailers, small businesses and franchises are being breached. However, small businesses can protect themselves. Just as a small business owner relies on a legal advisor to assist in the setup and registration of the company or an accountant to provide tax guidance to ensure accurate financial reporting, small business owners should enlist the expertise of a security advisor to explain the security requirement imposed on the business and how to protect the business network. Ultimately, proper security can help prevent a costly breach, an event which could stunt the growth of a large company, but ultimately destroy a smaller business.
Small Business Security is Vital
Dara Security realizes that small businesses need information security services just as much as larger organizations do. We have taken our information security service for larger organizations and customized it to fit the needs of our local small businesses. Through our SMB Compliance and Information Security Service package, our local small business neighbors can now benefit from the same expertise that we provide to our large business clients nationwide.