Being in property management involves a good deal of record keeping, including the sensitive data of your employees and clients. What would happen if a hacker were to gain access to your network? Could your organization survive the monetary and reputational impact of a security breach? If you are operating under any of the following cybersecurity myths, you may have to learn this the hard way. Here’s what you need to know to keep your data safe from falling into the wrong hands.
Myth #1 – My business is too small to be targeted
This is, perhaps, the most dangerous myth of all because it creates a false sense of security. The reality is, 71 percent of all cyber-attacks occur in businesses that have 100 employees or less. Even more concerning is the fact that 60 percent of small companies will go out of business within six months of a breach. In other words, no business is safe – including your property management company.
Myth #2 – Hackers don’t care about the kind of data we have
As mentioned above, much of the information you have on file within your property management company involves personal details and sensitive data relating to your employees and your customers. That’s exactly what hackers are after, and if you’re not taking appropriate measures to protect your confidential information, you’ll be cleaning up a bigger mess before you know it.
Myth #3 – Cybersecurity is something IT will handle
Another dangerous misconception is that cybersecurity is something only those in IT need to worry about. The reality is fewer than half of all cyber-attacks are perpetrated with malicious intent. That means a good portion of data breaches occur as a result of employee negligence. Everyone – from the CEO to each front-line employee – needs to understand their role in keeping data safe and be educated on what red flags to look for that could indicate a potential threat.
Myth #4 – Using anti-virus is enough to keep our network secure
Yes, anti-virus software is important, but it won’t do a lick of good if a breach is initiated through something like social engineering (phishing). The truth is, cyber-criminals are becoming savvier by the day and they’re finding loopholes and undiscovered vulnerabilities to exploit for which anti-virus is ineffective. That’s why it’s so critical to have a robust cybersecurity strategy that includes things like employee education and automated incident response.
Myth #5 – We are compliant, so we must be secure
Regulatory compliance and cybersecurity are two entirely different things. Compliance focuses more on protecting your property management clients than it does on keeping your network secure. That’s why falling into the trap of thinking you’re safe just because you’re compliant is a risky way to operate. Obviously compliance is important, but it shouldn’t be what you’re relying on for your network security as well.
If you are operating under one of more of the above myths, your property management organization could be at a much greater risk than you may have realized. Thankfully, by modifying your approach accordingly and being proactive about your protection, you can turn things around and create a stronger defense against would-be attackers.