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What it cost the small businesses that got hacked last year

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Small to medium business owners are likely to be a prime target in 2019 for cyber criminals who recognise that they are often much more vulnerable to attack than large companies with in-house IT expertise. Small business cyber security is now top of the agenda for many in 2019. Here’s why…

Figures published at the end of last year don’t offer any reassurance to SMEs who are concerned about cyber attack. Small businesses in the UK are the target of an estimated 65,000 attempted cyber attacks every day. While most of these attacks fail, around 30% of UK SMEs are successfully hacked every year. Yet two thirds of them admit to making no changes to their policies or systems to mitigate the risk of future breaches. This is probably why 56% of those who suffer a breach are the victims of multiple attacks.

The figures make stark reading, but when you add in the fact that the average direct cost to a small business for a cyber security incident was £25,700 it’s clear that SME’s are paying a very high price. That figure doesn’t even take account of indirect costs to the business such as reputation damage and loss of customers.

The average direct cost to a small business for a cyber security incident was £25,700

So, every business that thinks it’s “too small to be targeted by cyber criminals” needs to face up to the risks they are ignoring and take steps to protect their business.  Many lack credible cyber security strategies and would be well served by incorporating them into their business continuity plan.

Unknown costs often holds SME’s back from engaging help.

The most effective starting point for those with no real cyber security policy is the Government’s Cyber Essentials Scheme. It is now the UK standard for cyber security and has become a prerequisite certification to bid for most public sector contracts. It ensures protection from malaware, proper patch management and sets out the processes required for basic security measures.  It is supported by a government grants to encourage as many companies as possible to take the necessary precautions.

Net-Defence is accredited to carry out Cyber Essentials certifications for companies and has achieved successful compliance for many SME’s across a wide range of sectors.

Find out how to apply for a Digital Voucher up to £1,000 toward the cost of achieving Cyber Essentials for your business.

Learn about company Directors’ accountabilities in a digital age at an IOD workshop

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