Essential Guide to Cyber Security
How to Keep your Business Safe

Cyber crime is big business!

It’s been estimated that globally, hackers attack a target every 39 seconds, and the number of incidents has grown by 67% in the last five years. As more personal and business data is collected by businesses, this threat is only likely to grow.

UK Cyber-Attack statistics:

  • 88% of UK companies have suffered breaches in the last 12 months.
  • Around 65,000 attempts to hack SMBs occur in the UK every day.
  • 37% of UK companies have reported a data breach incident to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in the past 12 months.
  • Data breaches cost UK enterprises an average of £3 million per breach.
  • 48% of UK organisations were hit by ransomware in the last year.

Download our Essential Guide to Cyber Security to learn the best practices on how to keep your business safe.

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Learn how to identify potential threats and breaches with the Essential Guide to Cyber Security

One study by Allianz rated cyber incidents as the number one business risk, ahead of business interruptions, changes of regulation such as Brexit, GDPR, natural disasters and climate change[1].

Now it’s more important than ever to review your business security, doesn’t matter how large or small your business may be.

Topics covered in the Cyber Security Essential Guide:

  • Common cyber vulnerabilities and how to avoid them.
  • Discover the weakest link in every company.
  • Consequences of cyberattacks.
  • The GDPR relationship with IT Security.
  • Best tools to protect your business
  • Importance of Staff training.
  • Key essentials for any security solution
  • Malware Prevention System

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The Security Risks to SMEs

Many small and medium-size firms may see these consequences as a worry that is reserved for the largest enterprises, which hold huge amounts of personal data. But in fact, these companies are often not the most attractive targets for criminals. In reality, small businesses offer a more attractive target for hackers than larger companies because they don’t invest as many resources in cyber security, 

SME’s can be hugely valuable targets for hackers, as they will still hold valuable information, but they often have much less robust defences due to a lack of financial resources and expertise.

Indeed, in 2019, it was estimated by Verizon that 43 per cent of data breaches involved small businesses, and these can be highly costly.

If you wish to have a complete review of your business security strategy, contact our IT Security Experts now:

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To keep in pace with evolving security threats, businesses need to be proactive and protect their perimeter before it’s too late.

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  1. Introduction – The rising threat of cyber crime

Cyber crime is big business. In the last few years, both the number and sophistication of attacks aiming to steal key personal and business data have grown dramatically, with both nation states and organised criminal gangs increasing their efforts.

Therefore, these activities have become increasingly identified by firms as a top threat to their operations. Indeed, one study by Allianz rated cyber incidents as the number one business risk for 2020, ahead of business interruptions, changes of regulation such as Brexit, natural disasters and climate change.

Yet despite this, many firms are still unprepared for these threats, with poor-quality or incomplete defences that are unlikely to pose a significant barrier to a hacker. So what should companies do about this to ensure they are effectively securing their assets?

  1. Why security is everyone’s duty

With protecting data becoming a top business priority for any firm, it is no longer something that should be treated as a concern only for the IT department. Instead, every member of the organisation from the board level down will be held responsible for protecting their digital assets.

Senior staff are the key in achieving this, as they typically set the tone for the organisation as a whole. If they are seen to be making security a priority, others will follow. But if they’re complacent, this attitude will permeate throughout the company – with the potential for serious repercussions.

The consequences of security failings

A key factor in this is that the financial consequences for cyber security failings are higher than ever, with new, tougher data protection rules greatly increasing the size of the fines regulators are able to dish out. The most consequential change has been the introduction of the GDPR regime in May 2018, which is beginning to show its teeth.

Personal data has a real value so organisations have a legal duty to ensure its security, just like they would do with any other asset. If that doesn’t happen, we will not hesitate to take strong action when necessary to protect the rights of the public.”
Elizabeth Denham, Information Commissioner

This is without taking into account the costs from lost business, recovery operations and damaged reputations that can arise from a cyber incident. With GDPR including tough reporting requirements for breaches, the days of trying to sweep any incidents under the rug are gone, so firms will have no choice but to publicly deal with the fallout of a breach.

The risks facing smaller firms

Many smaller firms may see these consequences as a worry that is reserved for the largest enterprises, which hold huge amounts of personal data. But in fact, these companies are often not the most attractive targets for criminals. While the rewards for gaining access to the biggest companies can be high, there is also often a much higher degree of difficulty in targeting large companies with expansive resources to devote to security.

As a result, smaller firms are increasingly finding themselves in the crosshairs. These can be hugely valuable targets for hackers, as they will still hold valuable information, but they often have much less robust defences due to a lack of financial resources and expertise.

What’s more, they may also be viewed as a gateway into larger firms. Many small companies may be suppliers to larger enterprises or have other relationships that attackers can exploit to bypass the tougher defences of the bigger firm.

Indeed, in 2019, it was estimated by Verizon that 43 per cent of data breaches involved small businesses, and these can be highly costly. Research by Analysys Mason found that the smaller the firm, the larger the relative impact of a cyber attack – and with one in four small businesses saying their defences aren’t up to scratch, a breach could even threaten the survival of smaller firms.

  1. Understanding where your gaps are

The first stage …

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