#CyberFLASH: Why startups need to worry about hackers — and what you can do to protect your business

0128cyberattackWhen companies ply their trade in the digital world, data is like bullion: If snatched out of the vault, it could lead to financial ruin.

Attacks against the likes of Sony and Target steal headlines, but startups are anything but inconsequential to cyber thieves: More than a third of attacks globally are aimed at small businesses and the number of hackers is growing, too. McAfee Labs detected more than five new threats a second in the third quarter of 2014. A study it commissioned last March revealed one in five businesses were victims of a network breach, likely understated considering the stigma that comes with such an admission.

“You, as a customer, have only one demand,” said Carmi Gillon, executive chairman of Israel-based security startup Cytegic, in an interview in Toronto. “I give you my information. I believe you do the upmost you can do to keep the information safe.”

Mr. Gillon, a former head of Israel’s internal security service, Shin Bet, is on a mission to convince company leaders worldwide that cyber security isn’t just a matter for the engineers; it’s their concern, too.

Of course, he and Shay Zandani, Cytegic’s chief executive, are in Canada not just to share their mission, but also to drum up support for the company’s latest line of software. Cyber security is a fierce battleground in thriving tech hub Tel Aviv, where such startups number in the hundreds.

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