Small UK firms count the cost of cybercrime
Small UK firms are increasingly carrying the burden of cyber attacks on UK companies, according to a recent report by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).
In the report, entitled ‘Cyber Resilience: How to protect small firms in the digital economy’, small businesses are increasingly becoming the victims of cyber attacks, carrying the collective brunt of around seven million attacks in total. This, the FSB estimates, is costing the UK economy around £5.26bn.
The headline figures from the report suggest that around two-thirds (66%) of all small UK firms have been attacked by cybercriminals in the last two years. This was despite the fact that around 93% of such businesses have put in place procedures for dealing with cybercrime.
Each successful attack is costing small UK companies an average of £3,000, according to the FSB’s report. Adjusted for organisational size, the federation says that cybercrime disproportionately affects smaller businesses and therefore more support should be given to them.
Without intervention, small UK firms, of which 99% say that the internet is highly important to their business, could be put out of business by increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks.
Mike Cherry, the national chairperson for the FSB, said of the report:
The digital economy is vital to small businesses — presenting a huge opportunity to reach new markets and customers — but these benefits are matched by the risk of opportunities for criminals to attack businesses.
Small firms take their cyber security responsibility very seriously, but often they are the least able to bear the cost of doing so. Smaller businesses have limited resources, time and expertise to deal with ever-evolving and increasing digital attacks. We’re calling on government, larger businesses, individuals and providers to take part in a joint effort to tackle cyber crime and improve business resilience.