Data Protect Report finds data breaches at all-time high for small businesses

Information security services provider Shred-It has released its 12th annual Data Protection Report, and the results show that small businesses are struggling to keep their data protected in a changing technological landscape. 

According to the report, 9 in 10 businesses are struggling to protect their data. 

Data breaches have surpassed the previous record set in 2017 and now have an  average cost  of  around $4 million. 

Many businesses struggle to recover from the impacts of such a huge loss, according to an Aug. 23 news release from Shred-It. 

Last year, physical breaches like document theft accounted for 43 percent of all business breaches. 

Small business leaders cite remote work, employee turnover and supply chain vulnerability as the top three reasons why their data breaches are increasing. 

"It is abundantly clear that ineffective data protection strategies and bandage security solutions will not hold up against today's data breaches," Cory White, executive vice president and CCO at Stericycle, a health waste management company, said in the release. "Small business leaders must understand the potential impact of insufficient data protection, not only to protect their bottom line but also to safeguard their reputation with employees and customers. Leaders need to prioritize both digital and physical information security efforts and offer regular education to employees to help them maintain diligence and stay apprised of evolving regulations."

Although 53 percent of small business owners surveyed said that digital breaches are the greatest security risk to their companies, only 27 percent said they get rid of sensitive material when it's no longer needed. 

Amid these challenges,55 percent of small business owners feel they lack the resources to adequately protect their companies. 

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