January 29, 2019

Here are the most frequent and commonly neglected threats that entrepreneurs deal with and how to mitigate the impact of these threats.

  • Warding Off Lawsuits: This is the most dangerous threat to a small business. Even if you do nothing wrong, your company can be vulnerable to legal action from another party. Consider separating the legal structure of your business. The easiest way to do this is by operating your company as a sole proprietorship. But you are still not legally separated from your business which means if someone were to file a lawsuit they could potentially come after your personal assets. Consider forming a limited liability company (LLC), or corporation, which provides separation between you and your business.
  • Protecting Your Data: If you’re running a business, you are likely storing data that could harm your customers and employees if it was taken by a hacker. It is a common misconception that hackers usually target large corporations. However, the opposite is true. Bad actors tend to focus on small businesses because they are easier to victimize. These smaller enterprises are typically not able to afford the type of protection that larger businesses employ. Knowing the potential cyber threats will help you ward off the most common cyber attacks. However, unless you understand the world of cyberspace, it’s probably best to hire someone who does.
  • Protecting Your Intellectual Property: Many small business owners do not bother to protect their intellectual property because it is expensive to do so, and they don’t want to risk money investing in it if the business might fail. However, failing to protect your intellectual property can cause more headaches if your business takes off.
  • If someone happens to register a copyright, trademark, or patent that resembles your intellectual property before you do, it could result in costly court proceedings. This is why it’s important to file the appropriate paperwork with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the Library of Congress before your business starts gaining traction.
  • The three types of intellectual property protection include:
  • Trademark — Protects business names, logos, or catchphrases that are designed to brand your business.
  • Patent — Protects the invention of a new product or service.
  • Copyright — Protects original works of authorship, including video, audio, written word and more.

SOURCE: smallbiztrends.com, 1/21/19