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9 Small Business Trends for 2012

Stocks in this article: AAPL AMZN AXP C GRPN

4. Is your business cyber-secure?
Small businesses should be adding heightened security to their IT systems and mobile devices.

Today's cyber criminals are getting smarter and finding more complex ways to take advantage of personal information, including that on relatively open social networking sites, says Bill Morrow, executive chairman of Quarri Technologies.

Small businesses are becoming a growing target.

"Spear phishing campaigns, 'like-jacking' on Facebook and shortened URLs are just some of the techniques we've seen over the past year, and we can expect these approaches to get more sophisticated as we enter 2012," Morrow says.

Smaller firms are also typically easier targets, since many don't have the expertise or associate strong anti-virus programs with high expense.

Morrow suggests that small businesses embrace cloud technology to protect data.

He also warns that not all "attacks" are external.

"An inadvertent mistake or a disgruntled employee can cause significant damage to an organization if proper data security precautions are not in place," he says. "In 2012, stay ahead of potential threats by taking advantage of advanced technologies available to protect your sensitive corporate information."

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