Survey: Only half of small business owners and executives are fully prepared for a cyberattack

Banks, health care institutions, municipalities, businesses — even individuals. All are vulnerable to a potential cyberattack.

Provident Bank on Tuesday released the results of a cyberattack prevention survey that addresses cybervulnerabilities and fears among U.S. small businesses, with findings that 50% of small business owners and/or executives felt that cybersecurity was enough of a threat that they thought about it daily.

Anthony Labozzetta. (File photo)

“Cyberattacks pose a serious threat to businesses nationwide. Our survey confirms the
heightened fears that small business owners and executives are feeling right now regarding
their companies’ cybersecurity,” said Anthony Labozzetta, CEO and president, Provident Bank. “In light of the current climate, all businesses, small and large, should consider taking measures to address cybersecurity in their business plans.”

As international news coverage warns of potential cyberattacks on the U.S., Provident Bank said it set out to gauge preparedness.

78.95% of the survey’s 600 respondents felt that news coverage of international world crises has heightened their awareness of their own businesses’ cybersecurity, potentially prompting them to prepare their business for a cyberattack. Out of the 600 respondents, 50.17% reported that their companies are fully prepared for a cyberattack.

Although the U.S. has been working with the private sector to harden cyberprevention and
bolster abilities to respond to cyberattacks, 56.67% of the respondents reported one or more cybersecurity attacks in the past 12 months (27% of those responses experienced more than three cyberattacks).

Additional findings include:

  1. 69.5% said their business addresses potential cyberattacks or cybersecurity breaches in
    their business continuity plan;
  2. 61% said they use secure Wi-Fi to ensure their business and keep their customer’s data
    safe. The next most common were the utilization of an antivirus software (54.8%) and
    the backup of all data (49.67%);
  3. 41.67% of respondents expressed that increased information technology costs were one of the biggest impacts faced after a cybersecurity breach. This was followed by a loss of productivity (34.8%) and fines (25.8%).