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Small businesses growing target for cyber criminals | #cybercrime | #computerhacker

Earlier this year, Greater Manchester was ranked area most at risk to cyber crime

Author: Olivia DaviesPublished 8 minutes ago

Businesses with less than 10 employees have been hit harder by cyber attacks over the last three years, and despite battling high inflation and the cost-of-living crisis, cyber attacks are a top business risk for companies in five of eight countries.

That’s according to the new Hiscox Cyber Readiness Report, which has revealed many small business owners with less than 250 employees do not feel confident on the cyber issue, with only 3 in 5 (61%) saying they could handle an attack, compared to 71% in larger firms.

More cyber attacks have been reported by business leaders – both big and small – for a fourth consecutive year, as more than half (53%) admit they have been attacked at least once in the last year (up from 48% in 2022).

According to Cyber Magazine, a study by CloudTech24 analysed the latest data available from the National Fraud & Cyber Crime Reporting Centre to see which areas reported the highest levels of cybercrime for every 10,000 people.

It found that residents of the Greater Manchester area were most susceptible to cybercrime, with Greater Manchester receiving 1,803 cybercrime reports in the last 13 months, which equates to around 6.33 reports per 10,000 people, the highest of any area.

The most commonly reported types of cybercrime include the hacking of personal information and the hacking of social media or email accounts.

Dan Giannasi is Detective Inspector for the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit and said big events such as Eurovision and the Tory Party Conference in the region makes small businesses more susceptible: “cyber criminals want to target those kind of events and try and get into businesses who are working on those events or are part of those events.

“The reality is that any sort of organisation is important target for any sort of cyber criminal and often small businesses don’t have those resources in house to kind of deal with the threats of cyber crime. So it’s one of the big challenges they face is knowing where to invest, how to invest their money to protect their organization.

Detective Inspector Dan Giannasi has this advice: “There’s a lot of things business can do that are very cheap and don’t involve a lot of money… it’s called cyber hygiene.

“Making sure your password, and your account management is really good, make sure you’ve got stuff in place, make sure you’re aware of where your data is and what risks you face is really key.”

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