Increasingly, Cyber-attacks cost businesses and organisations thousands of pounds and cause costly and lengthy periods of disruption for businesses and customers alike. As a business owner, do you have a plan for what you would do if your customer database was stolen, your website was forced offline, or you couldn’t access your email or business-critical data?

The majority of cyber attacks exploit basic weaknesses in your IT systems and software. Cyber criminals don’t just attack banks and large companies – they target any organisation which isn’t properly protected, even small businesses and charities. Cyber Essentials shows you how to address those basics and prevent the most common attacks. The scheme is designed by Government to make it easy for you to protect your business. Cyber Essentials can help prevent the vast majority of cyber-attacks, by providing an insight into the steps taken to ensure cyber safety. Something as simple as a virus or piece of malware can result in loss of company and client data, disruption of your cash flow and could take up staff time by rectifying errors, or even resulting in network downtime. An attack may put off your customers, stop you actively trading and can damage your hard-earned reputation. Loss of data could breach the Data Protection Act and lead to fines or prosecution – which ties in with GDPR, which will be in force from 25th May 2018.

So, what exactly Is Cyber Essentials?

Cyber Essentials is a government-supported initiative to help organisations to stay safe from cyber security threats. Cyber Essentials assessments will enable you to help block the most common internet threats and attacks from your IT systems.

It is a mandatory requirement for some government contracts and recommended for all organisations as a way to show commitment to data security and Data Protection / GDPR requirements.

Cyber Essentials Badges:

The full scheme, launched on 5 June 2014, enables organisations to gain 1 of 2 new Cyber Essentials badges. It is backed by industry including the Federation of Small Businesses, the CBI and a number of insurance organisations which are offering incentives for businesses. Find out more here .

What does having a Cyber Essentials Accreditation Badge do for my business?

The Cyber Essentials accreditation badge allows your organisation to advertise that it meets a Government-endorsed standard.

Having a Cyber Essentials badge will:

  • Protect your organisation against common cyber threats.
  • Show your customers you take data protection seriously.
  • Enable you to bid for Government contracts.

Since October 2014 Cyber Essentials has been mandatory for suppliers of Government contracts which involve handling personal information and providing some ICT products and services. Holding a Cyber Essentials badge enables you to bid for these contracts. Find out more here.

The Cyber Essentials Accreditation does not:

  • Protect you from cyber-attacks as a standalone product.

With GDPR less than a year away, we’re actively encouraging our clients to take the next steps to making sure they are GDPR compliant. The Cyber Essentials Accreditation offers your business evidence, showing that you have taken necessary measures to ensure your customer’s data is protected.

How Computer Geeks can help:

The Computer Geeks team will work with you to ensure your business can meet the certification. We’re at hand to assist you in determining if the Cyber Essentials Accreditation is required for your business. If your business does require accreditation, we can walk you through the process needed, by helping you put measures in place that help to secure your business from potential cyber-attacks. Contact us on 0117 3250370 to find out more.