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Cyber Threats Worry Small Business Executives

Cyber threats represent top concerns for many small and medium-sized business (SMB) executives entering 2020, according to the "Q4 Cyberthreat Index for Business Survey" from cybersecurity solutions provider AppRiver.

Key findings from AppRiver's survey included:

  • 79 percent of SMB executives and IT decision-makers named potential cyber threats as "a top-of-mind concern."
  • 72 percent noted a successful cyberattack likely would be harmful to their business.
  • 66 percent said they believe cyberattacks "are prevalent on a business such as their own."
  • 45 percent said they believe their business is vulnerable to imminent cyberattacks.

Furthermore, AppRiver's survey indicated that 62 percent of SMBs plan to increase their cybersecurity budgets in 2020. The survey also showed that most SMBs have cybersecurity strategies and areas in which they plan to invest next year.

Technology Improvement, Training Are Top Cybersecurity Priorities for SMBs in 2020

Technology improvement (58 percent) ranked first among the top areas in which SMBs plan to invest for cybersecurity improvement in 2020, AppRiver's survey revealed. Meanwhile, training (57 percent) ranked second, followed by conducting regular reviews of security defenses (50 percent), adding in-house security talent (35 percent) and outsourcing security tasks or partnering with an MSP (30 percent).

Ultimately, SMBs — regardless of industry — are susceptible to cyberattacks. But with support from MSSPs, these businesses could bolster their security posture and combat cyberattacks both now and in the future.

Approximately 32 percent of SMB IT security operations are supported by MSSPs, according to the "2019 Global State of Cybersecurity in Small and Medium-Sized Businesses" study of roughly 2,200 SMBs conducted by password management software provider Keeper. This study also showed that 70 percent of SMBs leverage MSSPs for firewall monitoring or management or intrusion prevention systems.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.