The Cyber Security Checklist for Small and Mid Size Businesses

Cyber Security Checklist

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SMBs) have become BIG targets for ransomware attacks. A recent study concluded that roughly 2/3 of the world’s SMBs are now experiencing cyber attacks. Don’t have a cyber security plan? No problem, here is an easy-to-follow cyber security checklist to help you protect your business today.

Are You a Potential Target?

SMBs make up the largest segment of businesses in our country. We’re talking about businesses that range from family-owned retail locations, through startups to established businesses with several hundred employees. SMB owners often fall into a false sense of security believing “I am too small to be of interest to cyber criminals”. Not so! Hackers are both sophisticated and smart. They understand that small businesses are the least prepared to deal with cyber-threats and therefore easy targets. Use this downloadable Cyber Security Checklist PDF to safeguard your business.

“While SMBs do not face the same risk profile that of large organizations, they now clearly face enough cyber attacks that a prevention and response plan is vital”
– Chief Privacy Officer Magazine


Why We Assembled This Cyber Security Checklist

Checklist on ClipboardAt Fortis, it seems like every month, we get emergency calls to help fend off an active attack or recover data from a breach. Usually by that time, the damage has already been done with data stolen, accounts compromised or files crypto-locked for ransom.

Gangs of cyber criminals prey upon unsuspecting employees with phishing attacks and other tricks to steal passwords and access business computer systems and sensitive data. Their goal is most often to encrypt all files and demand ransom for unlocking the business data. These and other types of attacks can result in hours of downtime and revenue loss. For those unprepared, a cyber security breach can drive a company to go out of business.

A cyber security plan is your best defense to protect your company against cyber-extortion.

What is on the Cyber Security Checklist?

Football PlayIn football, you can’t defend against the other team by just having a safety or a linebacker on the field. Cyber security defense is no different. Your opponent (hackers) have a sophisticated playbook and a lot of offensive weapons. So, you need a defensive line, a secondary and good coaching.

The Cyber Security Checklist lays out how to put all three components in place. Your defense live will include protections for your computers, network and email. A secondary line of defense will feature protections such as back backups and web filtering. Security Awareness Training is the ongoing coaching that will train your employees to learn about data security and how to avoid scams and attacks.

Where do I start?

Start hereThe Cyber Security Checklist PDF is a downloadable document which includes prioritized steps to protect your business. Each task is outlined in easy-to-understand non-technical terms. For obvious reasons, the first item on the Cyber Security Checklist is Perform a Security Assessment. A review of your current systems is the logical place to start so as to identify where you may be vulnerable today and what must be done to protect your business.

What if I need help?

Most SMBs do not have cyber security experts on staff so for them, a Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) is the best solution. The MSSP provides an “out of the box” solution. They have both the highly trained cyber security specialists and the tools necessary to check off all the items on the Cyber Security Checklist. They can assess your environment, deploy the necessary protection measures and provide ongoing monitoring of your systems.

If you do have an IT Manager certified in cyber security, they should be capable of sourcing all the technical solutions, implementing each and performing the ongoing monitoring and maintenance.

You can download the checklist here:

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