Managed IT and telecoms provider Central Technology has warned that many businesses are sleepwalking into a cyber attack because they have a false sense of cyber security.

The Chesterfield-based firm is urging businesses of all sizes to carefully consider their approach to cyber security in order to cope with the current technology landscape.

Its call follows the publication of recent research which found that 50 per cent of small businesses have suffered a data breach, with two-thirds of them in the past year.

Worryingly, 86 per cent of the SMEs surveyed said they thought they were ‘doing enough’ to counter the effects of cyber security attacks, while more than a quarter said they felt safe from attack because they are ‘small and of no interest to cyber criminals’.

However, almost 90 per cent said they do have a plan in place respond to a data breach, while 33 per cent considered it their IT department’s sole responsible to handle security threats.

Only 25 per cent said they have dedicated security representation at board level.

Chris Barr, Central Technology’s technical director, said: “These new figures show just how much of a gap there is between how well-protected businesses think they are against cybercrime, and how effective their security processes and systems would actually be in the face of an attack.  

Cybercrime is a huge – and rapidly growing – threat to businesses of all sizes, which makes increasing awareness of cyber security and its importance to businesses of all sizes, but particularly SMEs, an urgent priority.

“An effective security strategy should include the use of products and services that provide increased levels of protection as well as internal company policies and training to help employees to work in a secure manner.”

It is estimated that cybercrime costs UK businesses around £6.8bn a year and costs the global economy around £266bn.

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