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Small businesses should be prepared for possible cyber-attacks

MEDIA RELEASE

Friday 21 July 2017

South Australian small businesses shouldn't think they are safe from becoming a target of extreme cyber-attacks which could damage their business.

Over recent months ransomware has caused havoc with a number of businesses around Australia and local businesses need to understand the risk, take precautions and do their due diligence in preventing becoming a victim.

Small Business Commissioner John Chapman says that being educated about the risk is essential for protecting a small business. "Cyber-attacks are here and they could affect everyone. Small Businesses should take these threats very seriously and invest their time in learning about cyber security and what they can do to ensure a cyber-attack doesn't mean the end to their business" Mr Chapman said.

Next month the Office of the Small Business Commissioner along with BDO, will present a free information session which aims to educate and inform small businesses about cyber security. The event will explore the types of cyber criminals, their motivations, latest trends and how businesses can be prepared and protected.

Nick Kervin, BDO's South Australian Technology Advisory partner who will present this event, says "As cyber-attacks continue to increase in complexity and sophistication, more organisations will experience them, which is why it is important for an organisation to work to improve their overall cyber resilience so they can respond to and recover from a cyber-attack as quickly as possible"

In May of this year, the "WannaCry" ransomware attacked around 200,000 companies and organisations in 150 companies around the world and BDO says that small businesses are an easy target for cyber criminals as they don't have IT teams to look after their equipment.

"Ransomware, which prevents or limits users from accessing their system, can lock a business down and SMEs, not just the big end of town, must always have one eye on cyber issues and (ensure they are) protected." Mr Kervin said.

Small businesses are encouraged to attend this event which will include a panel discussion with Nick Kervin and experts Nathan Morelli, Adelaide Branch Chair, Australian Information Security Association and Alex Nehmy, Cyber Security Manager at SA Power Networks, highlighting key tips and practical advice on what small businesses can do now to be protected.

The Cyber Security for Small Business event is being held on Tuesday 15 August 2017, 4:00pm - 5:30pm at the Small Business Centre Boardroom, Level 13, 99 Gawler Place, Adelaide. Registration is essential as places are strictly limited.

For more information or to register visit the Office of the Small Business Commissioner website at www.sasbc.sa.gov.au/events/ or contact the Office on 8303 2026.

Media contact: John Chapman, Small Business Commissioner on 8303 2026.

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