Top Cybersecurity Threats for SMBs

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) face a range of cybersecurity threats, from ransomware attacks to unpatched software. Unfortunately, these businesses are popular targets because they hold valuable information and intellectual property that cybercriminals hope to extort and capitalize on, but often lack resources dedicated to cybersecurity. 

Let’s take a look at the top cybersecurity threats for SMBs in 2023. 

Unpatched Software  

Outdated software can leave businesses vulnerable to cyber attacks, as hackers can exploit known vulnerabilities in older versions. To mitigate the risk of an attack through unpatched software, businesses should keep all software up-to-date and regularly patch vulnerabilities as soon as updates become available.   


Malware, also known as malicious software, is specifically designed to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorized access to a computer system. This can be deployed through ransomware, viruses, phishing, or other malevolent tactics. There are three main types of malwares:  

  • Trojan Horse: A scam where malware is hidden in an application, like a game or internet download. 
  • Virus: A malicious code that attacks programs, files, or parts of the operating system. We’ll explain more about viruses in the next section. 
  • Worm: A type of malware that infects a system and other associated programs. 

A phishing scam is a common tactic used by cyber criminals to trick individuals into revealing sensitive information, such as login credentials or financial information. These attacks often come in the form of fake emails or websites that appear to be from a trusted source.  


Ransomware, as the name suggests, holds a company’s important information for ransom. This includes passwords, credit card and other personal information, files, databases, applications, and other valuable assets. The “ransom” typically has to be paid within 24-48 hours, or the files will be lost or compromised personal information will be shared publicly. 

Password Hacking 

Password theft is an ongoing problem, and it’s important your employees protect their accounts with smart password choices. With that said, we know nearly 60% of individuals use the same password for all accounts. When these passwords are protecting your business’s most valuable information and data, this quickly becomes your problem.  

Cybercriminals can use a high-speed program to test passwords quickly and they are more successful when the person uses commonly used passwords, or personal information like their birthday or pet’s name. Another technique commonly used by cybercriminals is called hashing. Depending on the encryption strength of the account software, hackers can use a “hash”, one-way encryption software to steal passwords. 

IoT Devices  

The increasing popularity of Internet of Things (IoT) devices in the workplace creates new security challenges for businesses. These devices are often not secure and can be easily hacked, exposing sensitive information and putting a business at risk.  

Mitigating Cybersecurity Risks for SMBs 

Mitigating these risks requires a multi-prong approach that includes the implementation of robust cybersecurity measures, regular education of employees, and continuous monitoring of the latest threats and vulnerabilities. But the most crucial step to improving a company’s cybersecurity is understanding the unique risks the business is facing as well as where to make the biggest enhancements.  

Businesses don’t have to tackle these cybersecurity issues alone. A cybersecurity partner for access to the expertise and resources needed to help businesses of any industry or size address this and other pain points prohibiting growth.