The Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced six new recipients and $6 million in total funding for the SBA’s Cybersecurity for Small Business Pilot Program. All six grantees are state entities that will assist small businesses in advancing cybersecurity infrastructure and mitigating cyber threats.
“Cyber threats can be devastating to small businesses,” said SBA Administrator Isabella Guzman. “The SBA’s second cohort of cybersecurity pilot grantees will help our small businesses avoid dangerous cyber attacks that can create costly disruptions to their businesses and our nation’s supply chains and digital infrastructure. The SBA’s Cybersecurity for Small Business Program leverages the full power of our state governments, territories, and institutions of higher learning to provide turnkey, timely solutions to small businesses, and I am excited to see this expansion across Colorado, Indiana, Ohio, Virginia, Hawaii and Wyoming.”
SBA’s Cybersecurity for Small Business Pilot Program new grantees are:
- Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade
- Indiana Economic Development Corporation
- Ohio State University
- Old Dominion University
- State of Hawaii Cybersecurity Assistance for Small Businesses
- University of Wyoming
“This breakthrough cybersecurity pilot program could not come at a more critical time, as small businesses must tool-up to combat costly, stressful, and harmful cyber threats,” said SBA Associate Administrator for the Office of Entrepreneurial Development Mark Madrid.
Cyber attacks are a growing threat to small businesses and the U.S. economy. According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Report, the cost of cyber crimes against the small business community reached $2.4 billion in 2021. Small businesses are attractive targets because they have information that cyber criminals want, and they typically lack the security infrastructure of larger businesses.
According to an SBA survey, 88% of small business owners felt their business was vulnerable to a cyber attack. Yet many businesses can’t afford professional IT solutions, have limited time to devote to cybersecurity, or don’t know where to begin.
The federal budget for the SBA’s Cybersecurity for Small Business Pilot Program for 2023-2024 is $6 million, and the SBA awarded six grants of $1 million each. The period of performance for this award is one-year (12 months), beginning August 31, 2023.
The SBA will hold its second annual Cybersecurity Summit virtually every Wednesday in October featuring public and private sector experts who will provide practical information to help protect small business owners from cyber attacks. The public may register for this free event.