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Security demands on SMEs are proving a barrier to success

(Image credit: Image Credit: Methodshop / Pixabay)

Small and medium-sized businesses in the UK are missing out on a third of all enterprise contracts because of their poor cybersecurity posture, a new report suggests.

The report by CybSafe says that large enterprises demand from its partners in the supply chain a certain level of recognised cybersecurity standard, before inking any deals. This practice is on the rise – nine per cent more enterprises have such demands, compared to 2017.

They are forcing SMEs, which areoften part of a larger supply chain, to ante up in the cybersecurity game because they themselves are being forced by regulators and new laws. With high-profile data breaches costing more every day, enterprises are increasingly worried about protecting their data, and that includes data that needs to be shared with third parties.

Forty per cent of respondents have been asked by an enterprise customer to add cyber security precautions to contracts or RFP processes in order to win contracts in the past year.

“The study has revealed how enterprise customers are increasingly prioritising cyber security when tendering for supply chain businesses,” commented Oz Alashe, CEO and founder of CybSafe.

“While lax cyber security precautions may have gone relatively unnoticed a few years ago, businesses are now losing out on lucrative deals with their biggest customers because of them. Due to tighter regulations and an abundance of high-profile breaches, organisations have had to re-review and reinforce their entire IT estate, including third party suppliers.”