According to the Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2019, the average cost of all breaches identified in the last 12 months for small businesses was £1,210 while for medium businesses, it was £3,770. Also, around 32% of businesses reported having cyber security breaches in the last 12 months.To meet these cyber security challenges, the UK government has implemented a range of schemes and initiatives. Of all the initiatives, Cyber Essentials (CE) is possibly the most useful for SMEs.
“Only 30% of the enterprises mentioned implementing changes to cyber security because of GDPR.” – Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2019
According to a report by NIG, almost 80% of data breaches can be prevented by implementing Cyber Essentials. This initiative brings many benefits to businesses looking to get certified; here are the five most important benefits:
Helps build clients’ trust:
Around 60% of UK clients would stop doing business with a breached organisation according to a report by KPMG. CE certified SMEs would have an advantage. Cyber Essentials certification becomes even more important for businesses using and storing personal and sensitive data.
Improves operational efficiency:
Without a clear and consistent plan, a great extent of time, money and resources are spent on patching security systems. There is an inevitable loss in employee time during the restoration of services, particularly for IT staff. CE certification will allow both technical and non-technical staff to remain productive and efficient, by focusing on the core business needs.
Creates an opportunity to audit the internal security system:
The effects of a severe data breach on an business could be devastating. Not only financially, but also in terms of brand image and reputation. Cyber Essentials requires an business to assess their systems. They are assessed against the 5 key pillars, as well as document evidence of compliance. This is then have this approved by an independent Certification Body and subsequently an Accreditation Body; who have been approved by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC). This level of scrutiny on an businesses security policies will detect security vulnerabilities and elevate security substantially.
Cyber Essentials = more government contracts:
The UK Government requires all enterprises bidding for contracts which require handling of sensitive and personal data to be CE certified.
Improves cyber defence:
Cyber criminals are trying to steal data, money, or cause severe business disruption every day. Implementing CE is a great way for your business to approach cyber threats, and is an important first step in addressing security threats.
The Cyber Essentials initiative includes highly effective precautions such as using strong passwords, limiting access to sensitive information, software updates, malware protection, and more.These good security policies help bind this all together for a security strategy which lasts well beyond the day of certification.
m3 Networks is a Cyber Essentials Plus certified company with several Accredited Cyber Essentials (ACE) Practitioners on staff. We can provide advice and services to your business in order to help you get CE certified. We can take you well beyond certification to elevate your businesses security to where it needs to be.