This Saturday, December 4, is Small Business Saturday 2021. It sets out to highlight small business success and encourages us to 'shop local' and support small businesses in our communities. But it could also be an opportunity for SMEs and microbusinesses to reflect on what priorities they - and we - need to focus on.
The Cyber Resilience Centre for the East Midlands (EMCRC) itself is a small business, set up as a police-private sector-academia partnership, with the simple aim of raising cyber resilience across the region. That means the centre offers free core membership, helping businesses understand some of the risks from cybercrime, and offering support and guidance to those local businesses, too.
The EMCRC understands the pressures of running a small business and the differing parts that all need to be serviced. And sometimes it can be easy to put things off in favour of delivering those that have a deadline.
But putting off implementing simple measures to protect your business from an online attack could be a costly decision. It doesn’t matter whether you operate from home or the high street, whether your sector is retail or real estate, or even whether you are in Derby or Saxilby, this really matters.
The Cyber Security Breaches Survey is used to measure how UK organisations approach cyber security and the impact of breaches and attacks. They are official UK statistics and for 2021 there are some surprising headlines:
The survey states that only 18% of small businesses have heard of the ‘Small Business Guide’ and only 13% have heard of Cyber Essentials which is a cyber security standard.
By joining the centre, you will receive the Small Business Guide along with other useful publications, and you can talk to us about taking the first steps to achieving Cyber Essentials.
You will have heard the saying ‘knowledge is power’, well by making yourself and your staff more aware of cybercrime risks, but importantly, how to avoid falling victim to it by taking simple steps, then you are giving your staff that knowledge and gaining power by making your business more resilient and less susceptible to a cyber-attack.
Only 13% of smaller businesses train staff on cyber security and only 19% have tested their staff response, for example, with mock phishing exercises. This is an area where the EMCRC can help you - we are determined to keep out terminology simple and explain things without the use of jargon.
As part of our membership, you will get the Little Book of Cyber Scams which provides simple guidance to help you and your staff protect yourselves from cybercrime. So why not take up our free core membership and start that cyber security conversation?
Report all Fraud and Cybercrime to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or online. Forward suspicious emails to firstname.lastname@example.org. Report SMS scams by forwarding the original message to 7726 (spells SPAM on the keypad).