How to operate more securely online

 
Did you know that your business can better prepare for future uncertainties? Maybe your organisation is one of the many already taking steps to do this. 31% of businesses already have a continuity plan including cyber security and 15% have conducted an audit on their cyber security vulnerabilities (Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021). 
 
The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) are here to help you wherever you are on your cyber security journey. Our ambition is to raise the cyber resilience and maturity of SME’s. Our UK Business Engagement Team is dedicated to helping sole traders, micros and small businesses become more secure online. We have lots of free advice and guidance to help businesses.
 
 
Why should businesses care?
 
SME’s are pivotal to the UK’s economy, they account for 99.9% of the UK’s private sector businesses. Over the past year, businesses in the UK have adjusted to new ways of working and are using the internet more than ever. Over 60% of firms report that they have adopted new technologies or management practices since the onset of the pandemic, while a third have invested in new digital capabilities (Centre for Economic Performance Covid-19 Analysis, September 2020). Unfortunately, this potentially creates more opportunities for cyber criminals.
 
So, what is the likelihood of your business falling victim to a cyber attack? Here are some of the latest stats for the last 12 months:
  • Four in ten businesses (39%*) report having cyber security breaches or attacks
  • Around a quarter (27%*) experience them at least once a week, with the most common being phishing attacks (83%*)
  • Where businesses have faced breaches with material outcomes, the average cost is estimated at £8,460*
 
* Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021
 
It is crucial that businesses are equipped to deal with the evolving cyber threats that come from working in a more digital world. The good news is that the NCSC has actionable and affordable advice and guidance that can greatly improve your organisations cyber security.
 
 
What do businesses need to do?
 
NCSC has created a range of free products and guidance that are affordable to implement. Below is a selection of just some of those on offer:
 
  • For those just starting out on their cyber journey, the NCSC promotes 6 practical steps on how to stay secure online through its Cyber Aware Campaign
  • For those looking to take their cyber security up a level, the Small Business Guide offers more detailed advice for small businesses looking to improve their cyber security and our Small Business Guide: Actions List complements this.
  • Our Response & Recovery Guide helps organisations prepare their response to and plan their recovery from a cyber incident.
  • Exercise in a Box is another free online tool which helps organisations find out how resilient they are to cyber attacks and practise their response in a safe environment. The tool includes micro exercises, which take 15 mins.
  • The Top Tips for Staff and Small Organisations e-learning package can be completed online or built into an organisations own training platform.
 
 
How to find out more?
 
You can find out more about the NCSC’s products and guidance by visiting our website (see also Links section).
 
If you want to access the latest trends and topics in cyber, you can sign up to the NCSC’s new monthly Small Organisations Newsletter.
 
If you have any questions, please get in touch with us at suppliers@ncsc.gov.uk.
 
 
Links
 
 
Cyber Aware Campaign - https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware/home