Small business not prepared for cyber breachesClick image to enlarge

The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) has released polling data on the state of cyber security in Canadian small businesses.

A new Leger poll, commissioned by IBC, of 300 owners of small and medium-sized businesses with fewer than 500 employees, showed that 44 per cent of small businesses do not have any defences against possible cyber attacks, and 60 per cent have no insurance to help them recover if an attack occurs.

Key findings:

  • Nearly one in five businesses (18 per cent) polled have been affected by a cyber attack or data breach in the last two years.
  • Thirty-seven per cent of businesses hit by a data breach estimate that the attack cost them over $100,000, while one in five (20 per cent) had no idea of the cost of the breach.
  • Half of small business owners surveyed (50 per cent) believe that their business may be vulnerable to a cyber security attack, and 56 per cent stated that they're concerned about how a breach could affect their business.

“We live in a time when many businesses conduct all of their activities electronically, and the majority of their assets are in the data they collect,” said Ryan Stein, IBC executive director, policy. “There have been several high-profile personal information breaches that have affected tens of millions of records and cost the affected companies millions of dollars. Small businesses are not immune to cyber attacks, and these problems are not going away. We are encouraged, however, that some of these businesses are now beginning to turn their attention to this important issue."

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