For Agents & Brokers
HSB survey shows small businesses accept cryptocurrency
Cryptocurrency can increase cyber risks, is your business protected?
At least one-third of U.S. small and medium-sized businesses accept cryptocurrency as payment for goods and services, HSB's latest cyber survey of small and mid-size businesses shows. Do business owners understand the cyber and financial risks?
Changing business practices
The HSB nationwide survey conducted by Zogby Analytics showed that 36 percent of the small and mid-sized businesses accepted cryptocurrency, while 59 percent of those companies purchased digital currency for their own use as well.
Newer businesses were up to twice as likely to do so.
Lower fees, bigger risks
The benefits of cryptocurrency can include lower processing fees and faster payments, but risks may increase for cyber fraud and computer attacks.
Can they afford it?
“Cyber criminals follow the money and fraud can be a serious problem,” said Timothy Zeilman, HSB vice president. “A number of currency exchanges have been hacked or embezzled and millions of dollars were lost. Smaller businesses, especially those starting out, can't afford to be cheated.”
Malware and phishing schemes
Cyber thieves target small businesses with many email schemes, he said, ranging from sophisticated computer attacks to malware and simple phishing scams.
Smaller businesses also may be targeted by hackers who infiltrate a company's data system to divert computing power to record and verify cryptocurrency transactions.
A lack of regulations
Since digital currency exchanges bypass the banking system, trade globally and operate with little regulation, a small business owner may have nowhere to turn when fraud losses occur.
Security and insurance protection
“Small business owners should learn all they can about the technology before accepting cryptocurrency,” said Zeilman. “And make sure they have strong data security and insurance to protect against cyber fraud and financial loss.”
HSB can help