From the moment Tim Berners-Lee switched on the world’s first internet page back in 1991, even he with all his prescience could have hardly predicted the influence the web would come to have on the world. In the 30 years since, the internet and web technologies have become an integral part of almost all areas of our lives – everything from personal communication to how we shop, find information, and watch media.
While the internet has permeated all areas of life, nowhere has its influence been greater than in the workplace. The internet powers business – so much so, it’s almost impossible to think of any modern job that doesn’t involve web or web technologies to at least some degree.
However, as our use of – and reliance upon – internet technologies has increased, so have the dangers posed by hackers and cybercriminals. Now, in 2020, cybercrime has been cited as the greatest threat facing modern business and the fastest-growing form of crime.
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The risks posed by cybercriminals
We live in an age where there the real and virtual worlds have almost become one and most of our lives – both personal and work – now have a data equivalent. For the majority of companies, data is the lifeblood of their business covering everything from client databases to profit and loss spreadsheets and e-commerce inventories.
Internally, companies rely on data for their day-to-day operations but it’s also common for businesses to hold vast swathes of client information on file. Taken together, data on this scale becomes extremely valuable and can mean the difference between operating in profit and being forced to close.
Data breaches can cause multiple problems including company paralysis, complete shutdowns, loss of reputation or legal action taken as a result of compromised client information.
How business is fighting back
Data security is one of the fastest-growing market sectors in the world. As companies battle against increasingly sophisticated techniques used by ever more competent hackers, IT security has become big business. Globally, spending on cybersecurity in 2020 is estimated to have reached $123 billion. However, even this is just a mere drop in the ocean compared to the cost of cybercrime, which is expected to top $6 trillion in 2021.
These days, most companies have an allocated budget for IT security, often partnering with third-party providers to look after their networks. Also, company-wide security solutions like those provided by checkpointdirect.co.uk have become common in the workplace to provide all-in-one protection including:
- The threat posed by mobile devices on networks
- Data loss prevention
- Intrusion prevention by unwanted sources
- Anti-spam and email security
- Compliance monitoring to adhere to current security standards
Future steps companies should take to improve cybersecurity
Our use of technology, the web, and connected devices is only going to increase in the coming years and companies will need to remain constantly aware of evolving threats. That said, 90% of all cybersecurity breaches occur as a result of human error – highlighting the importance of establishing strict business security protocols and offering comprehensive staff training.
Moving forward, companies can greatly mitigate the dangers presented by cybercrime by properly educating staff, implementing security policies, and incorporating security hardware and software into their IT networks.