One in ten SMEs have spent more than £50,000 recovering from a cyber attack

A worrying new report has revealed the true costs small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can face if they fall victim to cybercrime.

According to insurance company Zurich’s latest SME Risk Index, almost one in six SMEs have suffered either a cyber-attack or serious data breach in the past year.

Of the businesses that have been hit, a fifth have had to spend between £10,000 and £40,000 to put things right – while one in ten have spent more than £50,000.

Following these findings, experts are warning that small businesses need to take greater care in ensuring they are better protected.

This is especially important following recent changes to data protection laws, it has been warned.

This is because, under the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which is now in full force as of 25 May 2018, businesses could face hefty fines if they suffer a data breach.

For the most serious breaches, these fines could amount to up to €20 million or four per cent of annual turnover, depending on which is higher.

Businesses are being advised to take the following steps to improve their cyber-security:

  • Encrypt company devices and data for greater protection.
  • Use cloud technology to back-up important data off-site.
  • Train their staff how to prevent, and ward-off, data breaches.
  • Monitor abnormal behaviours and transactions.
  • Change computer passwords regularly.
  • Invest more money in improving cyber security.