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NCSC reveals plan to help secure UK SMBs

security
(Image credit: Shutterstock / Golden Sikorka)

The UK government has released a new digital tool with a view to helping small businesses stay secure while doing business online.

Called Cyber Aware, the new National Cyber Security Center (NCSC) tool is effectively a digital questionnaire designed to help determine each company's level of cybersecurity preparedness.

After they complete the questionnaire, business owners will receive a personalized list of actions that should further strengthen their cybersecurity posture.

Microbusinesses are increasingly being targeted by cybercriminals, a recent government investigation found. Almost half of micro and small businesses have reported a data breach or an attack in the last 12 months, with 46 percent of them becoming victims (a 50 percent rise year-on-year).

“We know from our members that cybercrime is a top concern and priority for directors. The increase in flexible working patterns, which will continue beyond the pandemic, underlines the critical importance of cybersecurity,” said Jonathan Geldart, Director General, Institute of Directors.

“The practical support offered through the new Cyber Action Plan provides a framework for organizations to minimize the risks and recognize with confidence how and where their cybersecurity could be improved.”

Many small business owners believe their organization is too small to be an interesting target to cybercriminals. However, the numbers paint a different picture, with half of SMBs suffering a data breach at some point in the past, as per a report from Sectigo.

Almost half said their website gets attacked at least once a month, if not more frequently, with criminals often opting for malware injections, data breaches and brute force login attempts.