Small business owners learn the importance of cybersecurity

The small business workshop series will continue every Wednesday evening at Interserv Community Center in St. Joseph through Oct. 27.

Business owners learned how to protect their assets on Wednesday as part of a workshop series at Interserv Community Center, located 5400 King Hill Ave.

Wednesday’s small business workshop focused on the importance of understanding the legal aspects of owning a business, along with how to protect one’s business through technology.

Cybersecurity breaches are often threats that get overlooked, but for Tim Conard, president of TS Conard Inc. Technology Solutions and one of the presenting speakers for the workshop, he’s seen businesses fall apart by not taking these matters seriously or having the tools or software to protect them.

“Basically, businesses can be totally wiped out in no time at all by somebody clicking on something they shouldn’t,” Conard said. “The biggest threat is the in-user, the employees at that company.”

Wednesday’s workshop, made possible through a collaboration with Southside St. Joseph and Missouri Western State University’s Center for Entrepreneurship, gave business owners and those alike some tips on what they can do to prevent these sort of cyber attacks on their businesses from happening.

Thinking twice before clicking on links that don’t look familiar, changing passwords to 15 characters and even investing in antivirus or anti-malware technology may seem like minute preventative measures, but they’re changes that can keep a company from losing thousands of dollars.

“The biggest threat to business is losing money and losing the ability to operate. There was a company here locally just a couple months ago that was breached by somebody clicking on something they shouldn’t have. They weren’t prepared, they didn’t have the right solutions in place and absolutely everything was gone, even their backups,” Conard said.

According to IBM’s 2021 Cost of a Data Breach Report, which includes research from the Ponemon Institute, 2021 has seen the highest data breach cost in the 17-year history of the report at $4.24 million.

Jacob Meikel can be reached at jacob.meikel@newspressnow.com.

Follow him on Twitter @NPNowMeikel.

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