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COSBOA and MYOB urge small businesses to be extra vigilant during EOFY hacking season

Small businesses are being urged to be particularly vigilant as the busy end of financial year period usually sees a spike in cyber attacks.

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Cyber Wardens, an initiative of the Council of Small Business Organisations Australia (COSBOA) and MYOB, are highlighting the fact that fake invoices and online banking fraud are on the rise.

“Small businesses regularly have resource constraints and often prioritise their day-to-day operations or financial need over cyber security,” MYOB CEO, Paul Robson, said. “Yet small businesses remain a gateway to gain access to other clients, business partners and suppliers working with the business, making them an entry point for hackers.

“From our latest MYOB Business Monitor research of small businesses, we found that 41 per cent of SME respondents don’t feel prepared for a cyber attack,” Robson added. “That’s why we must all work together so that every small-business owner and every small-business employee knows the basic things they can do to protect themselves.”

Cyber Wardens, supported by the Australian government, has launched a free EOFY guide, a quick-reference tool that educates small businesses on what to look out for and how to combat the increase in cyber threats at EOFY that include impersonating the Australian Tax Office (ATO), the government’s MyGov website and financial institutions.

COSBOA CEO Luke Achterstraat pointed out that small businesses lose an average of $46,000 in an online attack.

“Unfortunately, tax time is a prime hacking season, and small-business owners and their staff need to be prepared and alert to online threats,” Achterstraat said. “That’s why we are delighted to work with MYOB to spread the word among small-business customers.”

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