SMEs and cyber security: the disconnection between perception and reality

Juniper’s cyber security report sponsored by TalkTalk Business sheds light on the relationship between businesses and cyber security. Even though 74% of organisations based in the UK “think they are currently secure when it comes to digital threats”, the report shows that 50% of them have been attacked in the past, and 29% of those attacks resulted in a data breach.

The false belief that ‘size matters’

Moreover, the report highlighted the fact that business size is unrelated to why some companies are attacked and others are not. 27% of SMEs believed they were secure because they were too small to be of any interest to cyber criminals. This is a bold statement with very little basis in reality: among those who claimed that their small size protects them from being a target, 59% had been attacked in the past.

SMEs are more at risk than large organisations

SMEs are more at risk of data breaches than larger companies because they don’t have the resources (in terms of money, skills and technology) to dedicate to cyber security. As a result, less is done to prevent or mitigate threats to cyber security.

This disconnection between perception and reality prevents small and medium-sized companies from fully understanding the risks they are exposing their business to. The report says that, “on average, a data breach costs over 19% of an SME’s revenue”.

It’s time to consider basic cyber security measures

Tight budgets and limited knowledge of cyber security or technology shouldn’t prevent entrepreneurs from securing their business. The cost-effective but expert-led way to achieve a basic level of cyber security is with Cyber Essentials. Implementing the five security controls mandated by the scheme can prevent around 80% of Internet-based attacks, so you can focus on other areas of your business. By choosing the Cyber Essentials Get A Little Help or Get A Lot Of Help fixed-price packages, you can achieve certification with our expert help and specially designed tools.

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