What Small Businesses Need to Know About the Future of Cybersecurity and Hackers With estimates ranging from 20 to 50 billion connected devices coming online between now and 2020, the attack surface is expanding at an exponential rate.

By Gary Davis

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Yuri_Arcurs | Getty images

Q: What should small businesses know about for the future of cybersecurity?

A: The truest way to frame the future of cybersecurity is to expect constant change. With estimates ranging from 20 to 50 billion connected devices coming online between now and 2020, the attack surface is expanding at an exponential rate. This fact along with hyper-connectivity brought on by new technologies like 5G will amplify the appetite of bad actors as they try new techniques to attack and disrupt your business. Our industry will continue to take on these new challenges through continuous innovation and recasting how security solutions are built and deployed.

Related: 5 Growing Cyber-Security Epicenters Around the World

To help thwart the efforts of cybercriminals who target businesses like yours, make it a point to stay informed of what's going on in cybersecurity and how it may impact your business. Part of staying informed would include how contemporary security solutions are addressing these cybersecurity challenges. I would suggest taking an hour or two each week to understand the cybersecurity trends that are impacting your specific industry (health, finance, manufacturing, retail, etc.) and along the lines of the size of our business.

For example, this past year we have seen an explosion in attacks targeting healthcare companies in an attempt to access personally identifiable information (often referred to as PII) about patients to use for identity theft, insurance fraud and other malicious activities whereas the previous year saw several attacks targeting retail point-of-sale systems. As your business grows, your cybersecurity posture should evolve with it. There are lots of ways to help stay educated and informed including following cybersecurity experts on Twitter, dedicated cybersecurity new websites and cybersecurity bloggers.

Related: 7 Cybersecurity Layers Every Entrepreneur Needs to Understand

One of the questions I often get it what's the single thing – the proverbial silver bullet – that I can do to protect my company from being the victim of a cyberattack. Unfortunately, there's not a singular suggestion or a one-size-fits-all security product that I can recommend to protect you from the ever changing and morphing landscape that defines the digital security space. However, by staying informed and practicing good cybersecurity as a function of growing your business, you will have the best chance of not being a victim and allow you to concentrate on growing your business.

Gary Davis

Chief Consumer Security Evangelist at Intel

Gary Davis is Intel's chief consumer security evangelist. He works closely to drive strategic alignment of products with the needs of the security space, as well as overseeing Intel Security online safety education to educate businesses and consumers by distilling complex security topics into easily understandable and actionable advice. During his more than five years at Intel Security, he has held leadership roles in the consumer and enterprise divisions where he has helped shape various product portfolios and strategic direction along with advocating for cybersecurity education.

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