Florida SBDC at USF Announces New Cybersecurity Service

Byte-Size Small Business Cybersecurity Program Offers Resources, Education to Arm Small Businesses Against Cyber Attacks

Florida SBDC at USF (Tampa) – The Florida SBDC at University of South Florida is pleased to announce a new cybersecurity service available to small businesses. The goal of the “Byte-Size Small Business Cybersecurity Program” is to provide small businesses with a sound understanding of the risks of cyber-attacks, common cyber threats, and to equip them with strategies to safeguard their business, customers, employees, and profits.

Through the program, the Florida SBDC at USF and SBDCs across the state will offer training and consulting to help meet the challenges of doing business in cyberspace. The new program encompasses three major components: in-person workshops, online training, and consulting.

The Cybersecurity Basics for Small Business workshops, which will be offered in-person at SBDC offices across the state, will cover four topics: basic cybersecurity threats, why cybersecurity matters, best practices for cybersecurity and resiliency, and cyber resources. The foundation for these workshops is a new in-depth cybersecurity resource guide, which offers business owners information and affiliated resources to help meet the challenges of doing business in cyberspace. The Florida SBDC Network will also produce a series of webinars for businesses.

The first Cybersecurity Basics for Small Businesses seminar at Florida SBDC at USF will be offered in Tampa on Friday, February 16, from 8:30 to 11 a.m ,at the Port Tampa Bay building on Channelside Drive.

In addition to training, Florida SBDC professionally certified business consultants will also work one-on-one with business owners to help address their individual needs and can also assist business owners through the development of a comprehensive cybersecurity plan.

The Florida SBDC at USF is a member of the Florida SBDC Network, a statewide service network of more than 40 centers. State designated as Florida’s principal provider of business assistance, the Florida SBDC Network provides consulting, training, and information to existing and aspiring businesses.

The Florida SBDC Network recently partnered with Ridge Global, a globally-recognized risk management cybersecurity firm, to launch the program statewide.

In alignment with its mission, the Florida SBDC Network works to help small businesses navigate common entrepreneurial pitfalls, thus yielding higher success rates and contributing positive economic growth for Florida’s economy.

According to Symantec’s 2016 Internet Security Threat Report, 43 percent of cyber-attacks worldwide were targeted at businesses with fewer than 250 employees.

“Cybersecurity has become an important business management tool for all businesses,” Florida SBDC at USF Associate Director, Yanina Rosario, said. “The Byte-Size program will show business owners there are many steps they can take that are simple and easy to integrate into their business to protect themselves and clients.”

Small businesses may learn more about the Florida SBDC’s new Byte-Size Small Business Cybersecurity Program by visiting http://bit.ly/usfcybersecurity.

About the Florida SBDC Network:

For over forty years, the Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of business assistance [Fl. Stat. 288.001], has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development to provide emerging and established business owners with management and knowledge resources that enable overall growth, increased profitability, and economic prosperity for the state. Since 2011, Florida SBDCs have provided 513,107 hours of consulting to 74,669 client businesses, resulting in 252,955 jobs created, retained and saved; $33.3 billion in sales growth; $2.6 billion in government contract awards; $1.4 billion in capital investments; and 4,159 new businesses started. A statewide network of over 40 centers, the Florida SBDC is funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida and other private and public partners, with the University of West Florida serving as the network’s headquarters. The Florida SBDC Network is nationally accredited by the Association of SBDCs. Florida SBDC services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Language assistance services are available for individuals with limited English proficiency. For more information, please visit www.FloridaSBDC.org.