While the wearing of masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19 seems uppermost on the minds of most Americans, hackers are a bigger threat to those in the self-storage industry. The resiliency of self-storage has proven to hold out during the pandemic, but cyber threats aren’t cyclical issues or once-in-a-lifetime events. Every business, large and small, is under continuous threat of cybercrime, and great loss can result from a direct hit if appropriate cybersecurity measures aren’t taken.

What is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity is a set of processes designed to protect online data by preventing, detecting, and responding to attacks made by cybercriminals. If a malicious link freezes the data in the system or if the data is held hostage, what will the business interruption cost? With appropriate cybersecurity measures, companies often manage to avoid the devastating effects of cyber-attacks. The biggest mistake many companies make today, include self-storage businesses, is to neglect cybersecurity.

The Cost of Recovery from a Cybercrime

Many small and medium businesses (SMBs) fail to take action to protect their data, despite big stories about companies whose customers’ personal and financial information has been compromised. Many don’t realize they are targets and others haven’t considered the potential impact of a cyber-attack. The cost to recover is often devastating, with the majority of small businesses ultimately closing their doors forever as a result of damage caused by hackers. Potential costs associated with a data breach include:

  • Loss of revenue
  • Management of third-party recovery
  • Forensic investigation
  • Customer notification
  • Penalties and fines
  • Identity theft repair
  • Hardware and software upgrades

The average cost of a data breach to a small business averages about $690,000, according to the Ponemon Institute, and that figure does not include revenue losses.

Top 3 Biggest Self-Storage Cyber Threats

Self-storage companies, like all SMBs, are seen as soft targets and are therefore just as vulnerable to a cyber-attack as anyone else. For a glimpse of areas where cyber defense is needed, the following are examples of common cyber threats:

Ransomware

Ransomware gets into computers after a malicious link has been clicked on, usually a link in an email or on an unsecured website. Ransomware freezes computers up, encrypts the data files, and demands a ransom in exchange for making the data accessible again. The biggest problem is that the data is rarely ever fully returned, regardless of whether or not the ransom is paid.

Spear Phishing

Falsified emails are created to trick recipients into opening them and exposing the computer system to malicious software. This cybercrime is known as spear phishing, and it is a common type of cyber-attack that comes against self-storage facilities.

Endpoint Security

Even when steps in cybersecurity are taken, an additional challenge is to ensure that any devices used remotely are also protected against hackers. Remote access is an unavoidable element of business in today’s world, but it can also create a weak point that further opens up a self-storage company to a cyber-attack.

Contact Weaver Realty Group

It’s good for self-storage owners and investors to have an Argus Self Storage Network Affiliate on their side, and Weaver Realty Group is an affiliate serving the Florida panhandle. One of the successes of Weaver Realty group has been in providing creative solutions for self-storage owners. Due to nationwide connections in the industry, cybersecurity is just one of the numerous areas in which the experienced brokers at Weaver Realty Group can provide insights and assistance. Contact Josh Koerner at Weaver Realty today by calling (904) 591-0140.