Advance Blog

May 13, 2020

Protecting small business against cyber attacks during COVID-19

The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) has published advice on how small businesses can better protect themselves from cyber attacks and disruptions during COVID-19.

The Head of the ACSC, Ms Abigail Bradshaw CSC, said since early March 2020, there has been a significant increase in COVID-19 themed malicious cyber activity across Australia and small businesses are far from immune.

“Small businesses can be big targets for cyber criminals,” Ms Bradshaw said.

“A 2019 ACSC Small Business Cyber Security Survey showed 62 per cent of small businesses reported they had previously been a victim of a cyber security incident.”

“There are simple measures that when implemented can reduce the risk and the impact of the most common cyber security incidents.

Key actions that can prevent many malicious actors from being successful – and help organisations recover quickly from cyber security incidents – include:

  • Watch out for scam emails (phishing) and don’t open attachments or click on links;
  • Update your software and operating systems;
  • Use strong passphrases and don’t share them round;
  • Enable multi-factor authentication; and
  • Back up your data and store separate from computer.

COVID-19: Protecting Your Small Business publication is part of a series of advice being published by the ACSC at The ACSC is part of the Australian Signals Directorate.

Further information

The ACSC’s Web Conferencing Security advice helps to ensure that organisations and individuals make informed decisions when selecting and using a service provider. 

Cyber Security is Essential when preparing for COVID-19 encourages Australians to remain vigilant and ensure sound cyber security practices. 

The ACSC’s Threat Assessment on COVID-19 Malicious Activity provides an overview of observed COVID-19 malicious activity impacting Australians.

The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC)