Boston, MA\u00a0During National Cyber Security Awareness Month, the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation (OCABR) is recommending that business owners have cyber security plans in place that adequately protect their businesses, employees\u2019 and customers\u2019 personal information. To help business owners and consumers, OCABR has introduced new cyber security webpages for business owners and consumers on the newly redesigned Mass.Gov website.\n\nOCABR\u2019s goal is to inform both business owners that are licensed by the state and consumers about steps to take to help ensure a secure online and systemic presence. OCABR Undersecretary John Chapman emphasized the importance of protecting personal and business information to prevent consumers and businesses from falling victim to cybercrimes. \n\n\u201cNo matter how large or small your business, it\u2019s imperative to develop and implement a cyber security plan for the safety of your company, employees and customers,\u201d Chapman said. Everyone needs to be diligent and guard against the far-reaching impact of cyber crimes.\u201d\n\nCyber Security is a priority of the Baker-Polito Administration and the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation. Last month, the administration held the state\u2019s first-ever cybersecurity forum where business owners and thought leaders gathered to share information and ideas about combatting cyber threats.\n\u00a0\n\nA study published last month by the Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company found that more than half of U.S. businesses (53 percent) have experienced a cyber attack in the past year. In light of the recent Equifax data breach of 143 million Americans\u2019 information, it has become increasingly obvious that as cybercrimes persist so must our level of protection. \n\nOCABR is strongly encouraging businesses to develop appropriate cybersecurity plans, implement them, and test and update them regularly. It also recommends that business owners that are licensed by the state be aware that any third-party vendors with whom they contract also have appropriate cybersecurity protocols for the size of their businesses and the extent to which they have access to customers\u0027 personal information.\n\nFor both businesses and consumers, OCABR endorses consultation with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security\u0027s \u0027Stop. Think. Connect.\u0027 cyber security tool-kits for a variety of audiences.