The growth in cyber crime and internet hacking has been so immense that governments are stepping in to curb the menace. Case in point is the announcement from the Technology Strategy Board of the UK government of providing up to £5000 for SME UK to improve their cyber security by inviting outside experts.
What is the Funding For?
According to government experts, the funding will help SMEs to improve security of their data, information, software, application, and other online assets so that UK-based organizations stay ahead from the rest of the competition around the world.
The UK government has set aside a fund pool of nearly £500,000 for helping SMEs tackle cyber crime. A scheme called ‘Innovation Vouchers’ was initiated by the Technology Strategy Board to help small and medium size businesses to grow their scope of business and activities by looking for innovative techniques and knowledge.
SMEs are businesses that have 50 or less people in their workforce. As a result, they are less likely to have the financial muscle to invest on ‘additional’ expenses like inviting internet security experts from outside the company.
Growing Incidents of Cyber Security!
The BIS or Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills has also recently published its guide for SMEs to improve their internet security and protect their valuable data. According to Mr. David Willets, Minister for Universities and Science in the UK, the safety and security of a company’s data greatly influences its profitability and survivability.
All types of companies, especially SMEs, are now facing an unprecedented amount of cyber security risk. However, there are step that can be taken by all business to protect their data.
According to a research funded by UK’s Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills and carried out together by PricewaterhouseCoopers and InfoSecurity Europe, has found that SMEs are facing the highest risk of cyber attacks in history. The fact that 2012 saw an 11% rise in reports of cyber attacks on SMEs as compared to 2011, from 76% to 87%, the research results above sound quite credible.
While large businesses always make the headline for a security breach due to the sheer size of the event, SMEs also suffer on an average of £35,000 to £65,000 due to a data breach incident.
According to Mr. Andrew Miller, Information Security Director at PricewaterhouseCoopers, the increase in spending for internet security by SMEs has increased this year to 10% from 8%; however, incidents of cyber attacks have also increased. This is an indicator of a long journey remaining for a decisive victory against cyber hacking attempts.