Why Should You Invest in IT Audits?
A lot of companies identify as ‘offline’ and assume they don’t need cyber protection. However, virtually all businesses in Australia rely on some form of digital communication or services, such as staff email addresses, websites, social media for marketing, online banking, and e-commerce or an online store. It’s almost impossible to find a business that doesn’t use email or some form of digitized communication. What’s worrisome is that most businesses who identified a cyber-attack did so via a fraudulent email.
What Is an IT Audit?
Long-term relationships and changes in business direction can adjust your sails and those of the companies you work with. This can affect your network security and consequently your company’s integrity. You could be getting ripped off by your current IT company and not even know it. Find out through an IT audit!
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How Audits Prevent Data Breach Culprits
An IT audit can uncover vulnerabilities to the likely causes of data breaches and apply the necessary solutions. Small- and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) should know that hackers aren’t the only culprits behind data breaches even if they are the most common offenders. They should also watch out for their own employees with malicious intentions, as well as careless workers who either fail to identify a phishing attack or neglect data security habits such as using strong passwords. Companies that use cloud-computing software or allow employees to bring their own devices for work are also more vulnerable to a data breach.
No business is safe. In the UK, a survey has shown that more than four out of 10 businesses suffered from cybercrime in the last 12 months. Larger businesses have a higher likelihood of becoming victims, as seven out of 10 companies experienced attacks in the same period. The same trend can happen in Australia, as evidenced by the number of data breaches in the first half of 2019.
Huge Number of Companies Experienced Data Breach in 2018
The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) reported 245 data breach cases from July to September in 2018 involved private health service providers. The number doesn’t include cases from other companies that aren’t mandated by the Notifiable Data Breaches scheme. OAIC cited malicious or criminal intent behind 57% of the reported attacks. Regular IT audit preferably once every year can lower the risk.
What Happens After an Attack?
Data breaches can immediately lead to revenue losses and eventually ruin your brand once it becomes public. However, there are other underlying effects of any cyber-attacks.
Businesses that already lost money from a breach would then have to spend on new measures against future threats. That investment could have been put to better use by spending on regular IT audit. Their employees also need to devote additional time to handle the mess, which in turn prevents them from doing their usual tasks at work.
Other negative impacts include temporary file or network losses, corrupted software systems, an inaccessible website, no access to third-party services and stolen company assets like trade secrets or intellectual property.
An IT audit can also address your risk exposure from the type of application that you use for business. Hackers usually infiltrate your network through remote applications, but they can also attack through your database, remote desktop controls, VoIP and DNS networks, and unsecured VPN tunnels.
What Is the Real Cost of a Data Breach?
A single data breach can incur significant losses to your business and may even shut down your business. A study has revealed that SMBs can lose around AUD 40,000 on average from a cyber-attack. The financial impact on bigger companies costs AUD 18.2 million.
Many companies are unable to recover within six months after a cyber-attack. SMBs are more likely to close because of mediocre preparation against cyber threats, but this can be resolved with a reliable IT audit. Auditors must be updated with the latest IT security news and trends to determine what’s best for your business.
If your business isn’t insured against cyber-attacks, now may be a good time to consider buying one due to the higher chances of becoming a victim to cybercrime. The risk is so high that you are more likely to encounter an online attack than traditional risks such as accidental property damage and workplace injuries.
Choose From Different Services
Australian SMBs have a lot to gain when they invest in an IT audit or managed IT support. They can choose to sign up for real-time monitoring of emails against phishing attacks, which are among the most common tactics used by hackers.
These investments include complete IT solutions that not only focuses on a routine IT audit but also on workforce training and development. Some companies choose to have the standard four-hour service maintenance for servers and other important devices. For better coverage, they can sign up for eight-hour maintenance during business hours.
If you prefer to make a small initial investment, you can schedule a two-hour session with an IT auditor once every three months. These quarterly sessions already include proper training for employees and discussions about the present and future state of your business.
Don’t Forget Small Business IT Support
If you’re looking for more affordable IT managed services or IT technical support, you can find affordable IT services in Gold Coast. A lower cost for IT services or an IT audit doesn’t always mean substandard work. Some IT support services only require you to spend money on an as-needed basis. Even large companies should consider on-site IT support services due to the current shortage of qualified professionals in Australia, especially in the IT security field.
The Final Word
Australian SMBs can invest in IT consulting and business IT support services to protect sensitive personal information and avoid business closure. Schedule an IT audit today to find out how you can protect your reputation and improve operational workflow.