When we stop and think about it, arguably the most impressive element of the pandemic is how businesses of all sizes, especially small businesses, responded. Small business owners put everything into their business and expect their vendors to provide the same level of care and attention to detail when it comes to their business. Large enterprises figured out quickly how to be nimble. Everyone approached things differently because we had to.

Amid the pandemic, successful businesses adapted with the help of their vendors; they found new ways to operate; they launched new offerings and found new lines of business. While they may have weathered one storm, there is always another brewing.

While it may be natural to lower our guards after the past year-and-a-half, businesses — especially small businesses — cannot afford to do so. Many businesses think they have all the answers. But complacency is a serious threat.

The cybersecurity threat is real, only adding to the challenges businesses face. A Symantec report revealed that about 1 in 40 small businesses is at risk of being victimized by cybercrimes.

Bad actors use several tactics to attack a business, but ransomware — which often relies on phishing schemes — is a common approach. With so many working from home amid the pandemic, cybercriminals have more opportunities to exploit a business’ security weaknesses.

Ransomware has threatened businesses for decades, but the volume of attacks has skyrocketed in the past two years. During the first half of 2021, the number of attacks globally increased by 151%, and the FBI warned that 100 different ransomware strains circulate the globe.

One problem is that according to the 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report, half (50%) of small and medium sized businesses do not provide security awareness training to employees. Companies must change their “head-in-the-sand” approach or risk gambling with their revenues, customers and business.

Success is built on solid planning. While no one can predict every risk a business might face, it is reasonable to prepare for the unexpected and recognize that new threats continue to emerge.

It’s not a matter of having the answers to every problem that arises, but recognizing that problems will arise that need creative solutions.

To be successful, companies must understand the threat and assess their exposure and potential risk. Then, they must educate their teams and work to eliminate vulnerabilities.

Technology can help, but companies of every size must deploy current security technologies to safeguard against emerging threats.

Most importantly, businesses and IT teams don’t need to go it alone.

They just need to find a trusted partner who recognizes the challenges ahead and responds accordingly. Businesses deserve a partner who knows how to make IT easy and understands how to protect their business.