Cyber Crime Costs Business £21bn per Year
Cyber crime now costs UK business £21 billion a year, a new Government report has revealed.
According to a Cabinet Office report, The Cost of Cyber Crime (PDF), internet crime is on the rise as businesses are increasingly reliant on IT. The report found firms are losing £9.2 billion a year from intellectual property theft, £7.6 billion from industrial espionage, £2.2 billion from extortion, £1.3 billion from direct online theft, and £1 billion from the loss or theft of customer data.
Get Safe Online managing director, Tony Neate, said that small businesses should be on guard against all these risks.
“Businesses need to protect their PCs with anti-virus, access control, spyware and firewalls. Then they need to educate themselves and their employees on the risks.”
“They should get expert advice to make sure they have the right security in place to safeguard data.”
“Whether a small business uses a computer for their own finances, or holds other people’s data such as customers’ financial information, or actually transacts online, they need to be vigilant. Once a thief gets into your computer system, they can steal everything that’s there, which could include customer data and Intellectual Property.”
Neate added that larger firms would be more of a target, due to the larger sums of money, but that small firms are equally badly affected.
“Losing all your customers’ details could be devastating for a small firm, and you could lose your business as a result.”
“It can be harder for small firms to take protective measures as they won’t have a dedicated security department, but it is often not as hard as they think. If they are a one-man band there might only be one PC to protect.”
For more information on protecting your firm against cyber crime, visit the Get Safe Online website.