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Cyber attacks on the increase for SMEs

6 Tips to Keep Your Business Secure

cyber security

Are you an SME executive who thinks that cybercriminals won’t target your business because you’re not a big corporation with deep pockets and sensitive information?

Think again.

According to the 2022 Hiscox Cyber Readiness Report, cyber-attacks are on the rise for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The percentage of SMEs that experienced a cyber-attack in the previous 12 months increased from 55% in 2021 to 63% in 2022. A separate Vodafone survey also found that more than half of UK SMEs experienced a surge in cyber-attacks during the pandemic.

The increase in cyber-attacks is not surprising, given the growing reliance on digital technologies. The impact of an attack can be devastating to SMEs.

Research from Close Brothers Asset Finance revealed that 54% of SMEs that were attacked suffered a financial loss as a result, and two-thirds of SMEs that were targeted by cyber-criminals suffered multiple attacks.

As an SME leader, it’s important to take action now to protect your business. Here are six tips you can implement:

 

Tip #1: Educate Your Employees on Cybersecurity Best Practices

Your employees are your first line of defence against cyber-attacks. They need to be aware of the risks and know how to respond to them. Train your employees on how to create strong passwords, avoid phishing emails and suspicious links, and report any suspicious activity. If you don’t have that knowledge in-house, then engage an IT services company that can do this for you. Provide regular updates and reminders on cyber-security best practices, and make sure everyone in your team is on board.

 

Tip #2: Implement Multi-Factor Authentication

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds an extra layer of security to your systems and applications. It requires users to provide two or more forms of identification to access a system, making it more difficult for cyber-criminals to gain access. Implement MFA wherever possible to protect your business from unauthorised access.

 

Tip #3: Keep Software and Systems Up-to-Date

Keeping your software and systems up-to-date is crucial to protect against vulnerabilities that can be exploited by cybercriminals. Don’t let your guard down – cybercriminals are always looking for new ways to exploit weaknesses.

 

Tip #4: Back Up Your Data Regularly

Data loss caused by cyber-attacks can be devastating for an SME. Make sure you back up your data regularly to protect against this risk. Store backups in a secure location that is separate from your main system. This will ensure that you can recover your data in the event of a cyber-attack.

 

Tip #5: Invest in Cyber Insurance

Cyber insurance can provide financial protection in the event of a cyber-attack. It can help cover costs associated with data recovery, legal fees, and lost income. Consider investing in cyber insurance to protect your business from the financial impact of a cyber-attack.

 

Tip #6: Implement a Comprehensive Cloud Security Solution

At Bell Integration, we understand that internal breaches caused by poor working practices or malicious/negligent staff are a major threat to cybersecurity. That’s why we recommend a different approach to reduce the new and evolving set of risks associated with the cloud.

Our Netskope offering provides cloud security that is built for the modern, cloud-first world. Netskope helps organizations to discover and secure all their cloud services and data, protect against advanced threats, and enforce compliance across all cloud services. By implementing a comprehensive cloud security solution like Netskope, SMEs can protect themselves from the growing threat of cyber-attacks.

Network Defence Services from Bell provide a cost effective detection, response and compliance solution that’s ideal for any organisation looking to operationalise enterprise-grade cybersecurity.

 

Keep your Business Safe

In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, cyber-attacks are a real, and increasing, threat to SMEs.

But don’t let that stop you from embracing the benefits of digital transformation. By following the tips outlined above, you can keep your business safe and secure.

Remember, cybersecurity is a journey, not a destination. Take action, stay vigilant, and you’ll be well on your way to a safer and more secure digital future.