In the city of Rockford, small business are on every corner. Each one, a potential target for hackers.
“When you consider that 97 percent of all U.S businesses are small businesses the economic impact of hacking can be astronomical” said Director of Rockford Better Business Bureau, Dennis Horton.
The Better Business Bureau is working to bring awareness to the impact one unknown click can take on a small business.
“90 percent of them are through phishing e-mails. And through those phishing emails usually you will find ransom ware or other malicious software” said Horton.
The owners of Rockford Art Deli, say they’re keeping an eye out for these types of e-mails.
“You know you try to do as much as you can and it can still get through but if it did happen, as a cash based business, they can drain your accounts and you know you’re out until that comes back in” said Rockford Art Deli Owner, Jarrod Hennis.
Hennis says he recently got an e-mail from what seemed to be another local business, but after some digging that wasn’t the case.
“It was a random e-mail from a lender in town actually and it just had a link, everything looked legit when you went and clicked on it. But since I knew nothing was coming and I had nothing in the works, I didn’t click on it. So I kinda did some research on it before we opened it and you could tell it was fake” said Hennis.
Horton says one of most unknown facts is, the business owners are held responsible.
“Their business accounts, their bank accounts, were hacked and they suffered a loss that banks are not responsible for that loss” said Horton.
And being out of business, can be detrimental.
“50 percent of them said that after a month they would probably be out of business, if they were not able to recover that data” said Horton.