The big news in the IT world this week is that the phone and broadband giant TalkTalk were victims to a major hack online.

As a result of this hack, the providers four million UK customers were told their bank details and personal information may have been made accessible to hackers and scammers. The company admitted that it didn’t know how much of it’s customers information was encrypted, thus leaving the information vulnerable to a cyber-attack.

So what does this tell us about IT?

This scary piece of news remind us that absolutely nobody is except from cyber-crime, at least nobody who uses IT or technology. Whether you’re a huge technology giant like TalkTalk or a small local business with a staff rota of 3, if you’re using IT then you are vulnerable and you HAVE to protect your business.

You may be thinking that it takes years of experience and numerous IT qualifications to have the knowledge to be able to hack a company like TalkTalk, but that’s not the case. The police seem to believe that this latest bout of cyber-crime is down to a 15 year old who hacked TalkTalk from his computer in his bedroom. All it takes is some sound IT knowledge to be able to get into an IT system.

This should serve as the biggest warning to business owners and IT managers that IT security is not to be taken lightly. Anyone could be vulnerable to a hack and it could have devastating consequences for your business. Shares in the telecoms company fell more than 12% in Monday trading, extending its losses from last week, when news of the attack first emerged, highlighting the instant impact of a security breach on your business.

This isn’t the first time a big business has been hacked, and it most definitely won’t be the last. The same goes for small businesses: no one is exempt from cyber-crime. It’s absolutely not worth taking the risk and leaving data unencrypted or programmes not password protected. If anything is worth investing in a little IT support for, it’s your IT security.