Published: March 16, 2022, 09:27At least seven out of ten Swedish companies lack a solution for restoring mission-critical functions after a cyber attack. This is shown by a new survey from Telia. Especially smaller companies are poorly equipped. – No company can protect itself to 100 percent, and it is very important to have a disaster plan if the worst happens, says Fredrik Nyberg, IT consultant at Telia.Make it easier and safer to be a small business owner – start with free advice Ransomware attacks on Swedish companies are becoming more common. The IT company Cygate describes 2021 as “the year when we all discovered that we ourselves can be hit by cyber attacks” and predicts that cyber terrorism will escalate in 2022. In the new report Telia’s digital index 2022, every fourth Swedish medium-sized company answers that they have been subjected to intrusion attempts the past year. The affected companies have been able to describe what happened and give examples such as: “Hackers took over the company for a week, nothing worked” and “An employee clicked on phishing emails and we became the target of an attack”. – There is probably a dark figure. As many as 15 percent of the companies answer that they do not know if they have been affected, says Fredrik Nyberg, IT consultant at Telia.
Vulnerable not being able to recover data
A ransomware attack can paralyze an entire organization and do great damage. The attack means that the criminals encrypt business-critical data for the company and often require millions to release the encryption. Telia’s digital index shows that many Swedish companies lack security solutions that can both prevent attacks and reduce damage if the attack still occurs. 52 percent of the largest companies (more than 250 employees) lack solutions for detecting threats and intrusion attempts, 64 have no solutions for managing and acting on the attacks – and 71 percent answer that they do not have solutions for restoring critical business functions after an attack Medium-sized and small companies (up to 249 employees) are even more vulnerable. 62 percent lack solutions for detecting threats and intrusions, 75 percent do not have solutions for handling and acting on the attacks and 80 percent have no solutions for restoring critical operational functions. Fredrik Nyberg: – No one can build a 100% protection, but everyone can have a disaster plan if the worst happens. So an important effort is to make such a plan in peace and quiet. How do you recover your lost data with minimal damage to the business?Fredrik Nyberg, IT consultant at Telia.
Every other small company lacks an IT security policy
In general, larger companies prioritize IT security more than smaller companies, Telia’s digital index shows. When asked if the company has a policy (rules and guidelines) for IT and data security, only 47 percent of the smallest companies (1-9 employees) answer yes – to be compared with 82 percent of the largest companies (more than 250 employees). 31 percent of the largest companies have invested in IT security services in the past year – while 16 percent of the smallest have done the same, according to the survey. – As small business owners, it’s easy to put your head in the sand and think: suffer from cyber attacks – it does not happen to us. But unfortunately, more and more small and medium-sized companies are affected by attacks, says Fredrik Nyberg.
Tools can stop ongoing attack
He tells of a current example where an employee at a Swedish company clicked on a malicious link in an email and so the hackers were inside the system. The link downloaded ransomware and all data in the company was encrypted. The people behind the software demanded a ransom to release the encryption. – If you then have no backup of your data, it is basically run. In this case, the company was lucky, and we at Telia were able to restore servers and computers with the help of backups, says Fredrik and continues: – Today there are tools that enable us at Telia to monitor the company’s IT environment and stop a ransomeware attack if an employee clicked on malware.
Trend among cybercriminals
A clear trend among cyber attacks is that criminals attack so-called third-party systems. – They can, for example, attack your financial partner’s system where your company handles salaries and accounting. These attacks are of course difficult to prevent, but are another reason why you as an entrepreneur need to review different scenarios and how you can recover lost data. Fredrik Nyberg points out that many small businesses do not have the time or opportunity to build a secure IT environment, and that it often pays both in terms of safety and finances to hire an expert. For the smallest companies, there is Telia’s Personal Technician service, which is aimed at companies from one employee and up. – The service is based on you getting a technician from Telia that you can turn to regardless of need, question or problem. Together, you can tailor a security solution that suits your company, while you can get help with all other technology issues.How to get a personal technician at Telia, read more here