Cybersecurity is an issue that all business managers should be informed about- but hardly any are aware of what it is, why it matters and what they can do to protect their businesses.
Businesses around the world exposed just how vulnerable they are to cyberattacks and malware last week when the so-called “WannaCry” virus affected the systems of over 200,000 people. Attacks such as these can compromise your business’s financial security, as well as consumer confidence. Small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) should be particularly vigilant about these, but recent research has shown that hardly any are doing enough to protect themselves against attacks.
Research from Barclaycard shows that less than one in eight small businesses in the UK understand enough about cybercrime to protect themselves effectively. Even more worryingly, one in three SMMEs have not put in place a cybersecurity strategy.
As the number of attacks increases, so too do the number of threats posed to the financial viability of small businesses- but protecting your business needn’t be too complicated or costly.
According to cybersecurity experts, businesses should be updating their software frequently in order to keep their systems safe. Hackers are always evolving their techniques, and the best way to ensure you insulate yourself against attacks is to install software updates which respond to new threats. Most systems offer free software updates to users, and businesses should be taking advantage of these whenever they are available.
Invest in your security
Although it can be seen as a particularly burdensome expense, purchasing anti-virus or anti-malware software is crucial for businesses, especially if, like many SMMEs, you do not have in-house information technology expertise. This is an investment that almost always pays off: according to a survey by ISP Beaming, cybersecurity incidents cost UK businesses a whopping £34.1 billion last year, and less than half of businesses surveyed invested properly in their cybersecurity.
Take advantage of the support on offer
There is a wealth of free or low-cost resources out there to support businesses who want to find out more about protecting themselves online. The government’s recently-launched National Cyber Security Centre provides information and advice to businesses looking to build their defences. Compliance with the Cyber Essentials scheme is also a useful resource to ensure you protect yourself against most attacks. For more information about the range of support on offer in the Building Legacies programme please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office on 020 7537 6480.