You should be proud of what you’ve accomplished so far. You’ve taken a passion and turned it into your very own viable business. Running your own business requires a mix of blood, sweat, and tears (also a great band btw!) But while you’re focusing your bodily fluids on selling product, managing inventory, and interacting with customers, there are risks that you may not anticipate.
Certain risks can impact your bottom line and make you so very unhappy. Noticing these risks before they occur is a strong first step towards protecting your business. Don’t worry; we’re here to help you keep your business from falling apart. Here are some common risks that you need to be aware of, and how insurance can help you combat them.
3 small business risks to watch out for
1. Cyber Crime
Sure, some popular TV shows make hacking look goofy, fake, and, well, straight-up silly. However, real hacking and cyber attacks are a very common threat for businesses. In fact, 43% of spear phishing emails and 54% of spam emails target small businesses.
Spear phishing is when hackers send you emails that appear to be from a trusted source, like your mom or your best friend. Spam is unsolicited junk email, usually advertising something maliciously (SPAM is also a delicious brand of canned cooked meat). Small companies tend to be easier to target because they often lack the resources and protective barriers that larger ones use to fend off cyber attacks.
The most alarming stat may be that 60% of small businesses close within six months of a hack. But there are always ways to protect your business and minimize risk. Here are some ways to defend your business from cyber attacks:
- Make your passwords unique and difficult to guess.
- Update your passwords on a regular basis.
- Don’t click things from people you don’t know; if you receive a sketchy email from someone you do know, give them a call to confirm that they sent something to you.
- Install anti-virus software on your computers, which can protect you from email attacks and sketchy attachments.
- Update your software often; many software updates include security enhancements and bug fixes that could help defend you from cyber attacks.
- Actually read the terms and conditions when installing or downloading things like software. Resist the temptation to quickly skim over the page, as it will include details on what kind of access you’re giving to various parties.
- Back up your data. If your business does become a target, it’s important to always have a backup of all your files secured. You can use cloud sharing or an external hard drive to do this—better yet, why not both?
Implementing the tips above can help you and your employees shield your business from unwanted cyber threats. Having cyber event expense insurance can also help you cover your business in the event of a breach. Although business owners may have misconceptions surrounding cyber insurance, a cyber attack can severely impact your finances, along with your reputation with customers. if your business is not protected properly. Having the proper safeguards against cyber threats in place will have you feeling like this kid.
2. Business Interruption
When you think about protecting your business, certain ideas may pop up in your head that seem obvious. If you have a storefront, insuring your building can help cover the cost of repairs in case a fire breaks out. But what about the profits you’re missing out on while you’re trying to get your business open again?
For many small businesses, being out of commission for an extended period of time can be difficult – if not impossible – to recover from financially. That’s where business interruption income insurance comes in.
Business interruption income protection will pay for your loss of net income, and continue paying normal operating expenses if you’re unable to run your business due to a loss from a covered event. This protection is designed to help keep businesses going strong after they suffer a major loss, because the truth is that 40% of small businesses won’t recover after a disaster. Business interruption coverage can provide financial relief to help cover your bills, payroll, and other ongoing expenses until you’re back on your feet.
Another important area to consider is business continuity planning. You may enjoy planning for fun things such as picnics, vacations, or road trips; business continuity planning is almost identical, except instead of planning for fun things, you’re planning for worst-case scenarios that your business might face — isn’t that wonderful? But in all honesty, having a step-by-step plan for emergency situations is something that small business owners tend to overlook.
What should you do if your power goes out? What should you do first if your business gets hacked? How do you stop the Night King from taking over Westeros? Having a business continuity plan in place can help you answer all of these questions (well, maybe not that last question), and you’ll know exactly what to do in a worst-case scenario to keep your business running smoothly.
3. Customer Injuries
When a customer gets a booboo, your business could get a booboo too. Slips, trips, and falls are a leading cause of injury in Canada according to Statistics Canada, and lawsuits stemming from these kinds of bodily injury events are common amongst small business owners — so you need to be prepared for them.
In situations of third party bodily injury, you would turn to your commercial general liability (CGL) insurance for protection, but there are ways for you to proactively protect yourself from these accidents. The following infographic can help you watch for booboos that could impact your business:
Cyber crime, business interruption, liability risks, and theft can all lead to tears while you’re trying to run your business. Knowing how to identify and help prevent these risks can help you avoid costly losses, and can save you plenty of sweat and tears. Keep your eyes open while you’re busy running the show.
Ready to protect your business?
This blog is provided for information only and is not a substitute for professional advice. We make no representations or warranties regarding the accuracy or completeness of the information and will not be responsible for any loss arising out of reliance on the information. Terms, conditions and exclusions apply to coverage. See policy for details.