SMEs Need to Wake Up to IT Security

Small firms need to be more aware of IT security risks, say experts

Small businesses risk compromising their security through lack of awareness of IT threats, according to new research.

A survey of over 1,300 small firms, by internet services company Eclipse Internet, found that over half were unaware of the threat posed by a Facebook-targeted computer worm.

Over half (52%) of respondents thought that the virus, Koobface, was a social networking site, with a further 13% believing that it referred to a cartoon character from a kids’ TV show. Only 30 % recognised that the virus posed a threat.

The virus spreads by sending messages to those who are ‘friends’ of a Facebook user whose computer has already been infected. The message directs the recipients to a third-party website, where they are prompted to download an update of the Adobe Flash player. If they do so, Koobface is able to infect their system.

“With more and more users logging onto Facebook at work, it is imperative that all businesses are mindful about the impact threats such as the Koobface worm could have on their day–to–day business operations.”

said Eclipse Internet director, Clodagh Murphy.

“As small–business owners, you should analyse online and operating systems to determine the areas most at risk. For example, is an organisation’s customer data, internal accounting information or other sensitive data linked to the internet? In order to create a culture of security, small businesses must demonstrate to employees and customers that cyberfraud is a concern you take seriously.”

Further reading on the virus can be seen at the Wikipedia page for Koobface. Further business advice is available in our article IT Security for Small Business.

Small Businesses Wake Up to IT Security

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