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Zero Trust for the SMB

The cyberthreats are becoming more complicated on a daily basis. Business cyber insurance companies are demanding more attention to this area.  No longer is the option to fully trust applications, interfaces, networks, devices, traffic and users without 2FA (two factor authentication). Misjudging and misplacing your trust in a malicious entity can lead to severe breaches that can damage your business. Zero Trust Security practices go a long way by helping small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) minimize cybersecurity risks and prevent data breaches.

A former Forrester analyst, John Kindervag, introduced Zero Trust in 2010. The concept has since gained wide acclaim and approval as a trusted framework for cybersecurity. Trusting nothing within or outside its perimeter and insisting on verifying every attempted connection to the company systems before granting access is the Zero Trust approach. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) refers to it as a “never trust, always verify” approach.

Over 70% of businesses planned for the deployment of Zero Trust in 2020 and it is even more critical for SMBs in an era where workforces and networks are becoming heavily distributed.Implementing Zero Trust Security within your business can help guard against data breaches, downtime, productivity loss, customer churn and reputation damage.

Three Facts About Zero Trust Security

  1. Misconception: Zero Trust Security is only for enterprises.

The Zero Trust cybersecurity framework is a proven counterthreat strategy. SMBs are not going to deploy the same extremely solutions as an enterprise. Although, SMBs must protect sensitive data and networks by taking a reasonable approach and deploy solutions to minimize internal and external vulnerabilities. Thus, Zero Trust Security isn’t just for enterprises. It is equally significant for SMBs as well.


  1. Misconception: Zero Trust Security is too complex.

The complexity is not what you think, by applying Zero Trust concepts at a scale that makes sense for your business.


  1. Misconception: The cost of implementing Zero Trust is too high.

Zero Trust adoption is operationally and economically feasible if you focus on your most critical applications and data sets first.


Still Not Convinced?


Let’s look at a few statistics that should convince you of the seriousness of today’s cyberthreat landscape as well as the need for a Zero Trust approach:


  • Human error causes close to 25% of data breaches.2

Unfortunately, you can’t completely mistrust an external network, nor can you fully trust even a single user within your network.


  • Ransomware attacks are predicted by experts to occur every 11 seconds in 2021.3

There is no time to be complacent in today’s environment.


  • Over 40% of employees are expected to work from home post-pandemic.4

When this happens, many devices, users and resources will interact entirely outside the corporate perimeter. This increases the risk of an incident occurring.


  • Phishing attacks have increased by over 60% since the pandemic started.5

To counter such a scenario, cybersecurity policies must be dynamic and adapt to address additional concerns.


If you’re not equipped with a solid defense against cyberthreats, you may regret it later when a breach happens. It is very likely your current approach to cybersecurity falls short of stopping cybercriminals from accessing your network. The Zero Trust approach can change all that.


Adopting Zero Trust Security within your business does not mean you throw away your existing security tools and technologies. In fact, according to NIST, Zero Trust Security must incorporate existing security tools and technologies more systematically.


Build an effective Zero Trust model that encompasses governance policies—like giving users only the access needed to complete their tasks—and technologies such as:


  1. Multifactor authentication
  2. Identity and access management
  3. Risk management
  4. File System permissions
  5. Encryption
  6. Orchestration
  7. Analytics
  8. Scoring


Achieving Zero Trust may not be easy, but it certaily is well worth it. Don’t worry about where and how to begin, Hybrid IT Group has guided many organizations through this process. With the right MSP partner by your side, your journey becomes easier and more successful. Contact us to get started.



  2. IBM 2020 Cost of Data Breach Report
  3. JD SUPRA Knowledge Center
  4. Gartner Report
  5. Security Magazine Verizon Data Breach Digest


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