We’ve said it time and again: Today’s cybercriminals, hackers and nation state actors are using more advanced technology than ever. And those malicious tools are becoming even more sophisticated at a breakneck pace. To top it all off, new software developments are enabling these criminals, hackers and nation state actors to cast wider and wider nets, targeting businesses that, before, would have flown under their radar. These tools are readily available for purchase on the dark web and come with technical support to ensure their success. Firms small and large, of every type, are being infiltrated by vicious cyber-attacks across the world each and every day.

In the last 3 months, there has been an escalating number of attacks against organisations. Some examples include Accellion, ASIC, Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Channel 9 and one of the most concerning is the Microsoft Exchange software bug announced beginning of March 2021. This software bug allowed hackers and nation state actors to break into your email server needing no usernames and passwords. They would then leave behind a tool that allowed them access to your professional services firms email system at will. This tool then allowed them to gain a foothold inside your firm, from which to further compromise other systems inside your firm.

You may be asking yourself how these consequences can be so devastating and why should I care?

  • Your clients loose trust in you and your firm because you are not looking after their interests and keeping their highly sensitive personal information safe.
  • Reputation damage to firms and/or individuals which may not ever overcome or will take a very long time for people to forget.
  • Emotional and/or mental health concerns for those in charge of the firm or those on your team who feel responsible for what’s happened.
  • It goes without saying, bankruptcy of firms or individuals caught up in lawsuits to do with the disclosure of confidential information and how the client was affected.

I know many of you have suffered a ransomware attack of some description in the last few years. You probably escaped this easily by having a good ransomware proof backup system in place. Question is have you truly added up the costs you and the firm incurred from a 48 hour downtime? In one smaller firm we’ve spoken to recently this adds up to $96,000 in lost revenue.

Even knowing this, professional services partners and directors are tempted to cut costs and corners. When you’ve never suffered a cyber-attack, data security can seem like a distant concern. Obviously, you can bet on one thing: One day, your security will be tested by an attack. Whether or not the hackers or nation state actors punch through could mean the difference between your professional services firm shutting down for good — as 60% of small to medium businesses do in the six months following a cyber-attack — and remaining solvent and secure in your position.

So how do you protect yourself against suffering the devastating consequences?

You want to invest in your IT and Cyber security protections just as you would invest in the stock market or property. I know it’s tempting to not do this because of the cost. One thing you may not be aware of is the return on investment in your professional services firm can produce 200% to 300%. A really good return on investment in the stock market is between 6% and 8% per annum. It goes without saying that the investment in your professional services firm is the winning strategy.

Obviously, you want to work with an IT Services or IT Support company with extensive cyber security experience that implements on going cyber security services to monitor the security of your professional services firm’s IT systems 24x7x365. This must be a multi layered approach across all your IT systems either in house, in the cloud and hybrid systems. The service must also have guaranteed response times and you must know how long the data is going to be retained for.

Invest in robust cyber security solutions and secure the future of your professional services firm today. Book a discovery call today to let us show you

  • How we deliver you peace of mind.
  • How we can increase your team’s productivity.
  • Ensure you do not suffer the devastating consequences of a cyber-attack.
  • Be a hero to your clients.
  • Get that return on investment you deserve from your professional services firm.