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Small businesses urged to act to counter threat of cyber crime

Local MP and federal minister Angus Taylor

Threat: Local MP and federal minister Angus Taylor has called on local businesses to take precautions against the rising incidence of cyber crime.

Hume small businesses need to wake up to the threat of cyber crime and take steps to protect personal information and operating systems, says local member and federal minister for law enforcement and cyber security Angus Taylor.

He says the Federal Government wants businesses to look at websites like  to learn how to minimise risks.

In a statement issued today, Mr Taylor said malware could shut down a small business overnight.

“Sitting at the centre of our economy as they do, small businesses, in particular, are vulnerable,” Mr Taylor said.

“As a strong supporter of Hume small businesses, I know it will be critical that they keep trust with their customers when it comes to storing and protecting personal information.

“Yet too many of our companies, and I’m not just talking about mum-and-dad operations, have their heads in the sand about this.”

Mr Taylor said more than 47,000 cyber incidents were logged by the ACSC (Australian Cyber Security Centre) in the 12 months to June 30 last year/

This was an increase of 15 per cent on the previous year.

Major Australian businesses accounted for 7,283 of these.

“Many small businesses are finding their email systems compromised through malicious PDF files,’’ Mr Taylor said.

“Ransomware attacks are becoming more common.”

Simple steps like backing up systems daily, using encryption on computers and devices, updating software, drawing up a register of personal information belonging to customers and staff, and installing security software and spam filters, will help protect data.

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