Cyber Security a Growing Focus for Beauty Business Owners

According to a report by The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC), Small-Medium Enterprises (SMEs) inclusive of beauty salons were subject to an average of $63,500 in cybercrime incidents in 2022.

This statistic is echoed in findings released by US business development company SCORE – that small businesses are the target of 43% of all cyber attacks.

While consideration of cyber security and computer security generally is nothing new, a renewed focus is being placed on small businesses to manage the threat before it’s too late.

What is cyber security?

According to Cisco, cyber security is “the practice of protecting systems, networks, and programs from digital attacks. These cyberattacks are usually aimed at accessing, changing, or destroying sensitive information; extorting money from users; or interrupting normal business processes.”

In the same ACSC report mentioned above, it was noted that the most frequently reported cybercrimes were online fraud (27%), online shopping (14%), and online banking (13%).

While cyber security was deemed to be ‘very important’ to 80% of those surveyed by the ACSC in 2019, only 40% admitted to having an at least ‘average’ understanding of it. 

The same survey revealed that 97% of sole traders adopt a DIY approach to their business’ cyber security, likely due to financial limitations when it comes to outsourcing. Furthermore, nearly half of those surveyed spend less than $500 annually on cyber security.

What can beauty business owners do about it?

In February, the federal government announced it would appoint a new Cyber Security Coordinator to oversee and dismember increasing cyber threats. 

The government has also developed an assessment tool to help businesses establish their current risk.

In response to the protection gap, salon insurers are also jumping in to support vulnerable beauty businesses.

Insurance firm BizCover has released a Cyber Liability Insurance policy to help protect beauty businesses from claims and support profitability in the event of a cyber breach. Cover is provided in a range of instances, from data breaches including theft or loss of client information, through to loss and legal costs.

ACSC recommends business owners educate their staff on cyber security risks to bypass or lessen external threats.

For more information on how you can protect your business from cyber security threats, visit the ACSC website.

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