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FTC Issues New Cyber Guidance for Small Businesses

New Cyber Guidance

Cybersecurity concerns continue to drive the conversation in Washington as a number of recently revealed high-profile data breaches have been shown to have left millions of Americans’ sensitive, personal information exposed to cyber thieves.

Bipartisan outrage about lax security practices and poor notification procedures has led policymakers to hold a series of hearings that have been aimed at identifying legislative solutions that bolster security requirements for consumer data-intensive industries and businesses that, like apartment firms, use, collect, and maintain sensitive consumer data. While no consensus about a legislative path forward has yet been determined, lawmakers agree that more must be done to bolster cyber defenses across all sectors.

This past week, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued new guidance for small businesses on cybersecurity preparedness. While aimed at small businesses who may lack resources or in-house knowledge, much of the guidance would be of benefit to apartment firms of all sizes and is worthy of review. Given the ever-expanding cyber-threat landscape, this is the exact type of guidance NAA/NMHC has called for the federal government to provide.

The guidance ranges across 12 topics covering everything from Cybersecurity Basics to understanding the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework to Vendor Security. The guidance provides clear, actionable advice from across government, including the FTC, NIST, the Department of Homeland Security and the Small Business Administration (SBA).