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Cybersecurity Protections Fall Short When Facing Post-Attack Cyber Liability Exposure

Cybercrimes could leave your business vulnerable to lawsuits filed by trusting customers after a cybersecurity breach. California business owners need to be acutely aware that any information stored digitally is hackable – which in 2021, is nearly everything. Technology firewalls provide a certain degree of digital security, but the protection does not extend to personal and business assets in the event of a lawsuit due to a breach. Business owners and managers need to take a closer look at internal strategies and proactive asset protection planning to limit personal and business asset exposure.

Business owners today are driving blind, at night, in cyberspace, and they don’t even know it.  The future is here, meaning every day we live and breathe cyber.  From our phones, to our cars, our televisions, and the toaster – it seems like everywhere you turn, there’s another connection with a digital device.

Here, we’re discussing how you can protect your assets, both business and personal holdings, in a way that’s unreachable from the hackers and cyber-maniacs that may seek to wish you or your company harm.  Having options with your assets and being able to take action on those options is your true freedom in today’s economy.

It’s not uncommon for business owners to overlook the threat of cybersecurity altogether.  When considering a cyber protection strategy, you want to address the technological safeguards for offense and defense of your networks, sure, but so often businesses overlook the legal planning necessary to have in place before the tech fails and a cyber attack or data breach occurs.

As a California business owner, you want protection against class-action lawsuits which almost always follow a cyber incident.  Limiting your overall legal exposure and protecting your assets is key to surviving a cyber incident.

Every person is unique when it comes to asset protection as individual risk tolerance, assets, and family dynamics will vary.  What is for certain, is the undeniable risk of operating a business today without a cyber asset protection (CAP) plan in place.

CAP is at the intersection of digital finances, online security, and protecting your assets before a claim arises.

A law firm that focuses on asset protection for business owners will evaluate the vulnerabilities of your enterprise and make recommendations to achieving maximum asset security.

What’s at Stake Without Cyber Protection?

A lack of strong cybersecurity systems can leave your business exposed to cyber-attacks that often seek to steal customer data in the form of credit card and banking details, or to gain access to sensitive business information such as email accounts, details of your supply chain and infrastructure, or perhaps confidential vendor contracts and financial information.

Once the breach of customer data or other proprietary information has been discovered and reported, the business faces decades-worth of intangible business integrity disappearing in an instant.  After a cyber-attack, you could no longer have a competitive edge in the marketplace.

With the help of qualified technology experts and an asset protection legal team who understands how these cyber threats play out, you can implement a robust cybersecurity strategy and a cyber risk mitigation plan.

Why Cybersecurity Matters Now

With the pandemic giving rise to employees working from home, your company’s single on-site network has now multiplied to hundreds of different networks located inside your employees’ homes.

How can you possibly ensure that every employee has a secure home Wi-Fi network?  You can’t.

What about the shared Wi-Fi network from the coffee shop should your employee chose to work from there today?  Or even the free network at the airport your employee joins for just a few minutes to check email?

It’s virtually impossible to be completely technically-secure.

The only true solution to protect your business is to prepare to be attacked, and assume your entire company and personal wealth are at risk.

At Sollertis, we help you create safeguards for your business assets and personal wealth from succumbing to a malicious attack. Cyber asset protection is essential to your businesses competitive survival, and to maintain your personal financial wellbeing.

Is Cyber Crime Serious?

According to the FBI’s annual Internet Crime Report, internet crime was up by more than 300,000 complaints in the year 2020, than in 2019.

One study estimates the value of intangible assets to account for 90% of the S&P 500.  Intangible assets are comprised of intellectual property and goodwill.

If your business becomes the victim of a successful cyber-attack, your company, overnight, could lose years if not decades of cash and other resources allocated toward building the company’s brand reputation.  Your customers, investors, and competitors will change their perception of you and your company in a matter of seconds.

According to CNBC expert and Chief Technology and Security Officer at MedReview, Dan McNamara, “It’s important to take a multi-faceted approach to cybersecurity,”

“MedReview’s 300 employees provide medical and patient record support services to hospitals and healthcare providers nationwide.”

“As our organization has grown, so has the number of cyberattacks it faces. … In the last two quarters alone, we saw 12 to 15 million breach attempts, many of which take place during early morning hours and weekends. [To safeguard ourselves,] we try to embrace AI and autonomous services; implement real-time cybersecurity tools; and encourage every person on staff to play a role in combating online threats.”

The number of network connections to the outside world via the internet has increased exponentially over the past decade, and especially over the past few years as more devices are made to ‘connect’.  Each connection in your business is a vulnerability, and serves as a potential entry point for attacks and hackers.

If a hacker can access a business’s intranet or another digital business system, they can spy on business activity, seize files and programs, and expose or hold your data ransom for potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars.  These and other considerations must be addressed before an attack.  Protect yourself and your business against cybercrimes to reduce your exposure to legal liability.

How Likely Is an Attack?

If tech companies with entire departments focusing on enterprise level cyber security can be hacked, then so can your business.  In past years, industry-leading companies such as Adobe, Twitter, LinkedIn, Equifax, Marriott, Target, Ebay, Yahoo, Sina Weibo (the Chinese version of Twitter), and even the World Health Organization have fallen victim to cyber-attacks and data breaches.

In 2017, Target set a record for the largest settlement ever resulting from a cyber-attack. The company paid out nearly $20 million to customers who had their data compromised during a cyber breach.

Target is just one example of a company that has spent millions of dollars on settlements and legal fees to defend and mitigate the fallout after a cyber-attack.  There have been several other cases since then, although none quite reach the same magnitude.

The University of Maryland conducted a study that found hackers attack every 39 seconds.  That is more than 2,000 attacks per day.  Those attacks are on both individual people and businesses.  An Imperva report found that 78% of American organizations have experienced a cyberattack in the past year.  Both of these reports showcase just how common cyberattacks are on unsuspecting and likely unprepared businesses, both small and large, domestic and international.

We know the majority of these attacks are on privately held businesses rather than large companies.  Large companies have the resources to implement a sophisticated security plan and hire cybersecurity guards.

No matter how unlikely you believe a cyberattack is, it can happen to you.  The only way to protect yourself entirely is with a comprehensive cybersecurity plan. Business owners and managers also need to evaluate their assets and implement an asset protection plan to safeguard against judgments.

Why Does Cybersecurity Matter?

The average cost of a data breach is $3.9 million dollars, according to a recent study by IBM.

As we saw in Target’s case, cyber-attacks can cost companies millions in lost revenue, damaged brand reputation, data loss, and legal ramifications. A cyber-attack of any size can severely damage your business and possibly lead to its failure.

Your business operations and personal assets can be left vulnerable for hours, days, weeks, and months before the breach is discovered.  IBM estimated in 2019, that the average time to discover a breach was 280 days; meaning for over 9 months the hackers have unfettered access while you and your business continue operating as normal without a clue.

Additionally, recent laws now require robust cybersecurity to protect consumers from third-party interference and data exposure. You need to improve your cybersecurity if you want to maintain your success and protect your business.

California’s Recent Cyber Law

In September of 2018, California became the first state to pass a cybersecurity law for the Internet of Things (IoT).  Bill SB-327 went into effect in January 2020, to protect consumers’ information and privacy.

IoT manufacturers have to provide reasonable security features to protect their users’ privacy. Every connected device must be protected from third-party attacks or interference.

Any device that can connect to the internet and has an IP or Bluetooth address qualifies as a connected device. This includes smart home devices, computers, phones, and even smart children’s toys.

California’s SB-327 is just one example of recent cyber laws that are strengthening regulations for companies.  New laws may require you to strengthen your cybersecurity measures, and for businesses that fail to meet the regulations, there’s now an argument for negligence.

California has set the tone for cybersecurity legislation across the nation.

Protect Your Assets Against Cyber Liability Exposure

The best way to develop a strong, reliable cyber defense strategy is to work with experts who can diagnose your company’s technology and legal needs.  At Sollertis, our expert legal team collaborates with your technology team to develop a comprehensive strategy that protects your business and your personal assets.

The National Security Agency released its top cybersecurity mitigation strategies a few years ago to help from the IT side. While every team has its own strategies to build cybersecurity, they will likely recommend a similar approach as the NSA, focusing on certain aspects to minimize the impact of an attack.

In the same way, you need to shore up your financial security using asset protection trusts, different business entities, and equip yourself with the strings to pull and resources on standby needed to protect your personal assets and business livelihood when you’re hit by a cybersecurity breach.

What Is Priority?

Now that you know how integral cyber security is to your business, your next step is to begin protecting yourself.  Start with building a wall between your risky assets, like a business facing cyber threats, and your safe assets like your home and investments.

Before focusing on the technical aspects of your security, let an attorney draw your individual roadmap to reach total cyber asset protection.   Then, you’re better positioned to prevent and defend a cyber-attack from leaving you in ruins.

Clients come to Sollertis, an asset protection law firm in Rancho Santa Fe, California, because we help you be proactive and stay on the offense when it comes to new digital requirements and online regulations affecting businesses in California.

The Advantage of Knowing Now

The team of attorneys and professionals at Sollertis are qualified and experienced to help you develop a cyber asset protection strategy and implement the plan with your team because you only have until a breach occurs, which could be at any minute.  Achieving asset protection for our clients and their families is at the epicenter of how Sollertis helps clients achieve full financial freedom and contain the various cyber threats.

It took you many years to build and grow your wealth, don’t let a lack of planning for a cyberattack catch you off guard and wipe out your wealth.   Speak with an attorney at Sollertis today because these asset protection measures must be in place before a cyber incident occurs.

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