BT has been conducting research on the state of cybersecurity in the UK, and the picture it paints isn't pretty: Thousands of small firms are at risk of cyber-attack.
The research was in the form of a survey, which asked 1,000 British decision-makers in the UK businesses sector about their cyber-security habits and found that 51% of what it calls "micro-businesses" (1-5 employees) do not have the appropriate level of cyber protection and are actually using products designed to protect consumers, not businesses. Furthermore, 4% of SME businesses do not have any cyber-protection at all, among micro-businesses, this figure reaches 17 percent!
Chris Sims, Managing Director for BT’s SoHo (Single Office/Home Office, unit, said):
“There has been a huge shift over the past two years in the number of small firms moving their business online. Whilst that’s a really encouraging trend, being an online business can also bring its challenges, particularly around cyber security."
Why are British businesses vulnerable?
The digitisation of huge portions of UK business has given many, many more attack vectors to cyber-criminals to latch on to, and while cyber-criminals have been quick to adapt to the new opportunities, British businesses have not. This is made particularly apparent by the fact that 48% of small UK firms have been the victim of cyber attacks or breaches in the past year.
The Bigger Picture
To exacerbate the issue more, the President of the United States Joe Biden issued a statement last month warning the United States (it's sensible to assume this applies to us also) that the risk of an attack from Russian hackers is higher now more than ever and that now is the best time to take cybersecurity seriously.
These statements are mirrored by the Rise in Cybersecurity Attacks in the UK in the past year.