Create your personalised ‘Cyber Action Plan’ to help protect your business from cyber attacks
People are spending more time online this year due to COVID-19, which means more opportunities for hackers to carry out cyber attacks. They often do this by targeting people and businesses using email and website scams, or malware - software that can damage your device or let a hacker in.
If hackers get into your device or accounts, they could access your money, your personal information, or information about your business. The government’s most recent found that 46% of micro and small businesses reported cyber security breaches or attacks in the past year – up from 31% the previous year.
As part of the cross-government Cyber Aware campaign, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has created a state-of-the-art digital tool called the Cyber Action Plan, to help businesses securely navigate the increasingly digital landscape they operate in.
The Cyber Action Plan provides bespoke advice by the UK’s leading cyber security experts to help small businesses combat rising online threats. All you need to do is complete a short questionnaire to generate a personalised list of actions linked to the Cyber Aware behaviours. By following the advice, it will be harder for criminals to access your money and business information.
If you work for yourself or run a small business with fewer than 10 employees, there are six practical actions you can take to protect yourself online, and you don’t have to be an IT expert to action them. Together, they help protect you from the majority of preventable cyber incidents:
1. Create a separate password for your business email account – your inbox contains lots of sensitive information about your business. It’s the gateway to all your online accounts so keep it safe with a strong password that is different to all your others.
2. Create a strong password using three random words – the longer your password, the harder it is to hack. Long passwords can be difficult to remember. But using three random words will help you create passwords that are both long and strong. Start with your most important business accounts, like email.
3. Save your passwords in your browser – remembering lots of passwords can be difficult, but if you save them in your browser you don’t have to and it’s safer than re-using the same password for all your accounts.
4. Turn on two-factor authentication – this free security feature adds an extra layer of protection online and stops cyber criminals getting into your accounts, even if they have your password.
5. Update your devices – using the latest software, apps and operating system can fix bugs and immediately improve your security.
6. Backup – backing up means you always have a copy of your important business data in the event it’s lost or stolen e.g. contract information, customers personal details, key contacts. Make sure these backups are recent and can be restored.
Cyber Aware is the government’s advice on how to stay secure online, offering six actions people can take to protect themselves from the majority of cyber crime. Find out more at .