The international information security experts IT Governance
have warned that SMEs dangerously underestimate the impact of cyber attacks on their reputation, but can cost-effectively protect themselves with the government’s Cyber Essentials scheme.
The risk of attack is very real
SMEs are very attractive to cyber criminals: they have poorer security and limited resources, making them easier to attack than their larger counterparts, and are often part of larger supply chains, making them an easy point of access into larger corporations’ systems.
The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills/PwC’s most recent Information Security Breaches Survey
found that 74% of small businesses suffered a security incident last year, up from 60% in 2014.
The impact of an attack is clear
Reputational damage is a very real concern for SMEs. According to KPMG and Be Cyber Streetwise
, 89% of breached SMEs said the attack affected their reputation, damaging their ability to win new business and maintain relationships with existing clientele.
What SMEs can do to protect their reputation
Alan Calder, the founder and chief executive of IT Governance, says: “SMEs should look to the government’s Cyber Essentials scheme to protect their reputation. Cyber Essentials sets out five security controls that, according to the government, could prevent ‘around 80% of cyber attacks’. These controls provide a basic level of protection from the vast majority of cyber attacks, and improve business efficiency in the process.
“Certification to the scheme demonstrates that you’ve implemented these basic cyber security controls, reassuring your customers, stakeholders and staff that you have taken the precautions necessary to reduce cyber risks.”
Free Cyber Essentials guide
IT Governance has produced a handy guide to the Cyber Essentials scheme and how it can help SMEs to protect their reputation.
Businesses can download their free Cyber Essentials guide here
Alternatively, call IT Governance on +44 (0)845 0701750 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
and ask about Cyber Essentials certification.