We all work hard to build up our businesses and make them a success and to do this we usually use a range of IT equipment, software and the internet to advertise, promote and sell online. It is therefore really important to make sure we safe guard our businesses including taking into consideration cyber security.
A large proportion of small businesses take the attitude that “No one will target me will they?”. Unfortunately everyone and business are potential targets for an attack, particularly if you don’t take some simple precautionary measures to protect yourself. Any company that relies on computerized systems for payroll, marketing via social media or a website, booking systems, databases of customer details including payment details and/or any Intellectual Property or Patent information that could be of value. Companies can also be targeted as a route into businesses who they supply goods or services to. A business does not need to be specifically targeted to become a victim; cyber criminals constantly scan websites, systems and/or devices to detect vulnerabilities. Therefore, if you are not taking the appropriate steps, you will flag up as an easy target during this scanning process.
So what can we do about it? There are some really simple steps to see how secure you are – visit the Cyber Essentials website. Cyber Essentials is a UK Government Programme designed to check whether businesses are taking the appropriate steps to minimize the risk of a cyber attack on their business. There is a self assessment which is then passed to an industry expert to review and indicate whether your company meets the minimum requirements or not. Once you have carried this out it can be displayed on your website to demonstrate that you are serious about protecting your customers’ data.
There is also the new Cyber Resilience Voucher Scheme which is an award to a company that will make it possible for them to secure the services of an industry expert to help them with their cyber security strategy. This expert will also be able to answer any questions they might have to help them get their systems sense checked by the Cyber Essentials UK Government Standard. For more information and how you apply to the voucher scheme – have a look at the Cyber Resilience FAQs