Cybercrime on the Rise in North Carolina: Understanding the Threat Landscape From a Business Point of View


North Carolina is at a crossroads when it comes to cybercrime. On the one hand, the state has seen some recent progress against cybercrime. For example, the North Carolina Cyber Crime Unit offers several resources and services to help businesses combat cyber threats.

On the other hand, NC is still seeing an increase in ransomware attacks and high-profile breaches, both of which can devastate businesses in our state and beyond. Recent data from Spectrum Local News shows that North Carolina businesses have reported around 19,000 security breaches to the state Department of Justice.

Current Cyber Threats Facing North Carolina Businesses

As a business owner in North Carolina, it’s essential to understand the threat landscape you operate in. Cybercrime is a natural and growing threat to businesses of all sizes. It’s also worth noting that while cybercrime has traditionally been seen as a problem primarily affecting large enterprises and government agencies, small-to-medium-sized companies (SMBs) are increasingly at risk from these types of incidents.

This is because SMBs often have less robust security infrastructure than larger organizations or government agencies. This means that when an attack does occur against an SMB, it can be more damaging than if it were targeted at another type of company.

Moreover, data from Info Security Magazine shows that around 57% of surveyed SMBs worry that their cybersecurity budget might reduce even more, and that too during the time of increasing ransomware attacks.

In addition, because many smaller companies tend not to invest enough resources into their cybersecurity programs or lack them altogether, the impact could be even more significant than if they had taken measures beforehand.

The Impact of Cybercrime on North Carolina Businesses

Cybercrime is a growing threat to North Carolina businesses, but the impact on your business depends on your industry and size. Cybercrime can impact any company, from small businesses to large enterprises, regardless of size or industry. 

The consequences of cyberattacks range from simple disruptions in operations and lost productivity to data breaches that expose sensitive information about customers or employees.

Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated daily. They’re targeting smaller businesses because they are easier targets than larger ones and often lack adequate cybersecurity measures.

If you are faced with any such attack, quick disaster recovery is what you need. With an effective disaster recovery plan, you can bring your IT systems back to normal within no time, reducing the attack’s impact. There are many cybersecurity service providers offering disaster recovery.

You can look for a local service provider. For example, businesses in Charlotte are often a common target for cybercriminals. So if you operate in Charlotte, go for disaster recovery services in Charlotte, NC. Consider experience and testimonials as the most common factors when deciding on a service provider.

Many businesses hone their process over the years, which makes the experience a crucial factor. Net Effect Technologies, a managed IT services provider, has offered cybersecurity and disaster recovery for 9 years, as mentioned on its website. The website also has many testimonials from previous clients. One of the testimonials reads that the customer considers Net Effect Technologies’s engineers as a part of her team.

You can find such data on a service provider’s website and use it to decide. Compare multiple service providers and select the one that fits your needs.

Financial Costs of Cyberattacks

The financial costs of cyberattacks can be significant. According to IBM, the average data breach cost is $9.44 million in the US, and this figure doesn’t even include the reputational damage that often accompanies such incidents. To put it into North Carolina’s perspective, an FBI report shows that NC cybercrime victims lost $91M in 2021.

The costliest part? The loss of revenue is due to customers being wary about doing business with you again or switching providers altogether. In addition, businesses face higher insurance premiums and legal fees associated with investigations into cybercrimes like identity theft and fraud perpetrated by employees using company resources for personal gain.

Reputational Damages of Cyberattacks

Reputational damage is one of the most significant consequences of a cyberattack.

Your company’s reputation can be damaged in several ways, including:

  • The loss of customer trust and loyalty. Customers may choose not to do business with you because they feel unsafe doing so or think your security practices are weak and expose them to risk. They might also be reluctant to purchase products or services from other companies that share your infrastructure due to their experience with you.
  • In addition, when news breaks about an attack on one organization within an industry sector, for example, healthcare systems. Companies across that whole sector often experience negative publicity because they’re perceived as vulnerable too.

Legal Consequences of Cyberattacks

When it comes to the legal consequences of cyberattacks, a business owner can be held accountable in several ways, the most common including:

  • Loss of intellectual property (IP). If you lose your IP through a breach or theft, the person who uses it may be able to sue you for copyright infringement. This can happen even if they didn’t steal it directly from you. They might have gotten their hands on it from another source and used it in their work.
  • Loss of confidential information. Suppose someone steals confidential data from your company and uses that information against you or other companies somehow. In that case, this may constitute fraud or misrepresentation in court, depending on how much damage was caused by their actions and whether there was any criminal intent behind them.
  • Sensitive data loss could lead to lawsuits related to medical privacy issues if outsiders improperly accessed patients’ records without authorization.
  • Customer data loss could result in lawsuits based on privacy violations under certain circumstances. However, these types tend not to be very common because many businesses require customers to sign agreements stating they won’t share sensitive information before signing up.
  • Employee data leakage could lead again lead someone else to take advantage but also exposes employers’ liability insurance premiums rise due to increased risk factors associated.

Best Practices for Protecting Your Business

While there is no way to eliminate the risk of cybercrime, you can take action to mitigate it. Here are some best practices for protecting your business:

  • Use strong passwords and use them consistently across all accounts.
  • Keep software up to date, particularly on computers used by employees with access to sensitive information or financial data.
  • Train employees about how best practices can help protect their computers from viruses and other types of malware that could lead users into compromising situations online if they fall victim to phishing scams or other social engineering attacks.

Even the government is playing its part in fighting cyberattacks. FBI’s Charlotte Field Office has recently launched cybersecurity awareness campaigns. The motive behind this is to educate people to stay safe online.


We hope that this article has given you a better understanding of the cyber threats facing North Carolina businesses and how they can be mitigated. As seen in the examples above, many types of cyberattacks can occur against a business, ranging from data breaches to ransomware attacks.

The good news is that there are several steps that every business can take to protect themselves against these threats, including implementing strong password policies, conducting employee training sessions on cybersecurity topics such as data backup policies or incident response plans, using anti-malware software on all devices connected to your network, etc.