Cybercrime is a threat to any business, and not just the large, global companies that can be affected. Any place of business that stores personal details could be under threat of a cyber-attack, whether that be a small playgroup or nursery, a small online retailer or a large chain of shops.
Cybercrime comes in a variety of different forms, from fraud to stealing personal details. These attacks can have a devastating effect on businesses with an attack costing a business on average anywhere between £1,300 – £3,000, but, especially if they could have done more to protect their data, they could lose so much more – including their good reputation. Small businesses rely on repeat business to keep their companies going but 90% of the companies that have suffered a cyber-attack have lost business. Not only that, it has affected their ability to gain new business as well as damaging their brand. Small or medium business have a 50% chance of experiencing a cyber breach regardless of whether they have a core online business. Areas such as payroll, marketing or online booking systems could all suffer an attack.
The Scottish Business Resilience Centre is advising Scottish SMEs and charity and voluntary businesses to apply for a grant of up to £1,000. This will help to contribute towards the cost of attaining a Cyber Essentials accreditation, through a supplier of their choice, that will help them understand the risks and help give them the tools to protect themselves from cybercrime. All SMEs need to do is have a registered base in Scotland and operate IT with a connection to the internet.
The wider public are becoming increasingly more aware of these cyber-attacks. This is partially down to large companies that have their data breached being ‘outed’ in the national press. As such, the general public now have an increased awareness of cyber security which could see SMEs struggling to compete in the market if they cannot provide the security required by the discerning buyer. The Cyber Essentials Accreditation is a UK Government backed certificate and is a simple way to assure businesses have the correct controls in place should a breach happen. It can also help to show publicly that SMEs are ‘on the ball’ when it comes to cyber security.
All businesses, no matter the size, are a potential target of this type of crime so it is essential that they take the necessary precautions to prevent it. With help from the government for SMEs in Scotland available, there’s really nothing to lose by applying.
Your business must meet certain criteria before you can apply for a Cyber Essentials Voucher:
Are you a small or medium enterprise with fewer than 250 employees?
Do you have a registered base in Scotland?
Is your company currently trading?
Can you give us your ‘SC’ company registration number?
Does your business have a network connection?
If you can answer ‘yes’ to ALL of these questions, simply click the link below to make an enquiry with Scottish Enterprise:
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