Government Helps SMEs Beef Up CyberSecurity

2013 Information Security Breaches SurveyResearch for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills has shown that cybercrime cost small businesses more than £1 million last year.

Hot on the heels of a report from Symantec, the Government has commissioned its own investigation into cybercrime on small firms.

The results concur that cyber attacks on small businesses have increased over the past year and that they are costing more than £1 million in damage.

In its Information Security Breaches Survey a staggering 87% of small firms said that they had experienced a security breach last year, 10% up on the figures for 2011.

Big businesses have also been targeted by cybercriminals and 93% of large organisations have reported attacks.

The cost of cybercrime has been estimated as up to 6% of a small business’s turnover and it is understood that firms could protect themselves for far less.

The biggest security breaches for small firms have cost an estimated average of between £35,000 and £65,000.

Innovation Vouchers for Cyber Security

With the threat of cybercrime costing small businesses more than it would cost to protect themselves, the Government has extended an initiative called the Innovation Vouchers Scheme.

Under the extension to the scheme, SMEs can bid for bwtween £5,000 and £500,000 of Innovation Vouchers for Cyber Security to help them beef up their security.

The Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts said:

"Keeping electronic information safe and secure is vital to a business’s bottom line. Companies are more at risk than ever of having their cyber security compromised, in particular small businesses, and no sector is immune from attack. But there are simple steps that can be taken to prevent the majority of incidents."

"The package of support we are announcing today will help small businesses protect valuable assets like financial information, websites, equipment, software and intellectual property, driving growth and keeping UK businesses ahead in the global race."

For the full report see the 2013 Information Security Breaches Survey (PDF).

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