CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Cyber threats are a real issue right now for businesses both large and small.

So right now, Charlottesville business owners are learning how they can stem the tide of these malicious attacks.

The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce hosted this second annual event on Thursday, October 25, at the Jefferson Theater. Its goal is to educate area and chamber member organizations on how to protect themselves from cybercrimes and hacking.

The event is designed to help executives, managers, and business owners understand the realities that cyber risks pose to organizations.

The chamber of commerce says more than half of central Virginia businesses have been victims of hacking.

Keynote speaker Mark Laliberte says small steps can go a long way when it comes to preventing these attacks.

“Simply even knowing about the threats that are out there gives you a big leg up on everyone else, because you can prepare yourself for these types of attacks and prepare yourself for recovery from them as well,” Laliberte said.

He adds that 60 percent of small businesses who are affected by cybersecurity attacks never recover and have to close their doors for good.