Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in the UK have faced up to an average of five cyber attacks in the last 12 months. That’s according to research commissioned by online encryption specialists Appstractor Corporation that highlights the growing threat such businesses face from online criminals.
A significant number of IT decision-makers in these SMBs believe they’re being put at greater risk of attack because their security software isn’t keeping pace with the sophisticated nature of the attacks with which they’re confronted.
According to the new independent report entitled ‘Under Attack: Assessing the Struggle of UK SMBs Against Cyber Criminals’. some businesses (19%, in fact) faced as many as ten attacks in the last year. IT bosses who took part in the research survey suggested that one of the major causes for concern for SMBs in the UK is that security and encryption software is aimed at individual consumers or large corporations and Governments, meaning that they cannot be deployed effectively in a small business environment.
In fact, only 44% of IT decision-makers in SMBs believe that they’re able to properly protect themselves against cyber criminals using current software and systems when compared to the ability of large businesses to protect themselves.
A third believe that the UKs small business community – which makes up 99% of businesses, according to the Federation of Small Businesses – is being “forgotten about” and placed at a higher level of risk when compared to their larger counterparts.
When it comes to the level of threat faced by these smaller companies, Appstractor Corporation’s research found that 17% of companies faced at least one attack in the last year, 28% were attacked two or three times, 32% faced four or five attacks and 19% were attacked between six and ten times.
A small proportion of companies – 2% – said that their company had been targeted up to 20 times in the last 12 months.
Commenting on the report, Paul Rosenthal (CEO and founder of Appstractor Corporation) agreed that current solutions were not up to scratch. but also said that some SMBs were making themselves an easy target for criminals.
“It’s the case that SMBs are at a disadvantage in the cyber security arms race because software and platforms are not being effectively designed for them, so they have to shoehorn consumer or large enterprise-grade solutions into their company which don’t work in small businesses. IT managers and small business owners need to rid themselves of their current ideas that they are too small to be targeted and so don’t have to worry about security and encryption software. The reality is that small businesses are being targeted by criminals more than ever before. Techniques like automated mass targeting are putting them at a serious and present risk of attack.”
*To access the full report click here