October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month

SmallBusinesses_5Protect your business and your customers from growing cybersecurity threats. Small businesses are an easy target for cyberattacks as they have weaker security and therefore it is easier to gain access to their information, systems and networks. 

Small Business Cybersecurity Defensive Measures:

Train and educate employees
Establish basic security practices and policies for your employees such as strong passwords, internet use guidelines and established rules detailing the handing and protection of customer data. Train employees to be alert for email and phishing scams. Be clear on the consequences if these policies are not followed.

Protect computers and networks from cyber attacks.
Secure your company computers by ensuring each have malware, spyware and firewall software installed. Prevent access to networks on non-business computers. Also consider encrypting all sensitive data and emails. Keep computers updated.

Back up Data Regularly
Be sure to back up data regularly so that if information is lost or compromised it can easily be recovered. 

Why is this important for your small business?
Most businesses are dependent on the internet for day-to-day operations. Just one breach could potentially put you out of business. 

A small reminder — cyber threats are not always outside your business. Be sure to have appropriate internal controls in place to prevent employee fraud.

Looking for more info on protecting your business from cyber threats?  

The U.S. SBA has compiled a ton of helpful information. The National Cyber Security Alliance also has some helpful information for businesses.

New Business Advisor in Aroostook County

Josh Nadeau, Center Director and Business AdvisorMeet Josh Nadeau, Center Director/Business Advisor at Northern Maine Development Commission serving all of Aroostook County.


Born and raised in Caribou, Josh is the son and former employee of a small business entrepreneur who successfully owns and has run a business for over 20 years. His past experience includes serving as a Commercial Lines Underwriter for MG Insurance Company and sales and management at a car dealership. He has a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Maine at Orono. 


In his spare time he enjoys riding his Polaris Ranger with family, fishing, being outside, and playing basketball. He is looking forward to serving the residents of Aroostook County in reaching their entrepreneurial goals. 

Maine SBDC Announces 2015 State Star

2015 State Star Ann McAlhanyThe Maine Small Business Development Centers (Maine SBDC) has selected Ann McAlhany as the 2015 State Star. The award, given annually, recognizes a member of the Maine SBDC staff that has shown exemplary performance and a strong commitment to small business success.
“Ann is an incredible asset to our program and role model among her peers. She is well connected within the small business community and works closely with our partners to ensure the success of her clients,” said Maine SBDC State Director, Mark Delisle.
McAlhany is a certified business advisor at the Maine SBDC at CEI in Bangor. She works with entrepreneurs and small businesses in Penobscot and Piscataquis Counties to start and grow their businesses. In the 10 years that McAlhany has been with the Maine SBDC, she has spent 9,649 hours working with 909 clients. She’s helped to start 57 businesses, create/retain 296 jobs, and generate almost $17 million in capital. In addition, McAlhany works closely with related small business programs such as Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development and Maine Technology Institute.

Each year, America’s Small Business Development Centers recognizes top performers from programs around the country at its annual conference. A special reception was held Tuesday, September 8, 2015 in San Francisco, California to honor this year’s award winners.

Blue Ox Malthouse – Lisbon

“In no small part, the ability to leverage this funding and bring the business into pilot production has been a result of the support and resources that Janet Roderick, and more broadly the Maine Small Business Development Centers have provided.”

– Joel Alex, Owner

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Ski Depot – Jay & Bethel

After eighteen successful years in business, Kenny and Ronnie Jacques came to see Maine SBDC Center Director and Business Advisor Jane Mickeriz for assistance expanding their business, Ski Depot. With a reputation for quality customer service and expert knowledge, Ski Depot includes a retail and web shop, full service tuning, boot fitting and rentals to meet all of a skier’s needs.Read More

New England Mobile Showers – Portland

“It was great to be able to utilize the resources of the Maine SBDC and to tap into John’s knowledge. Without the Maine SBDC, I wouldn’t have known about the bank I eventually ended up receiving the loan from, and without John I would have never heard about the Libra Future Fund Grant.”

– Zachary Schmesser, Owner

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