£21bn and counting – the cost of cyber crime to UK businesses

In opening ourselves up to new technologies and faster, more efficient ways of doing business, it’s inevitable that there will be amateur opportunists and large organised criminal groups alike looking for the first gap in security, ready to scupper your well-laid plans without a second thought to how your business might recover.

And they’re coming up with ever more inventive ways of doing so, with IP theft, industrial espionage, and extortion amongst the more favoured methods.

It doesn’t matter that you had every best intention of protecting your customer, client or suppliers’ data – their addresses or dates of birth – all that matters is that as the business that stored and subsequently, however unintentionally, lost that data, it’s you that’s responsible, and you as a business, or even an individual, who’ll be liable for any legal action.

The Office of Cyber Security estimates that of the £27bn that cyber crime is costing the UK, £21bn is at the loss of businesses who are frequently the victims of IP theft and industrial espionage.

The consequences can be as costly as the crime itself, when you consider the affect on business, legal costs, PR management fees and the recovery costs of a digital cleanup.

According to PwC, this can amount to an average cost of between £65,000 and £115,000 for SMEs and £600,000 – £1.15m for larger firms. If you’re online, you hold sensitive data, or your business operations rely heavily on technology, then it’s quite possible that you could see your company’s own revenue sucked into that £21bn.

Unfortunately as with so many other threats not just to business, but to areas of our personal lives, it’s only after we’ve become a victim to scams and crimes that we consider taking out protection.

In its 10 year lifetime, Cyber Liability has evolved as insurers and underwriters have come to better understand cyber crime, which means that aside from better online protection software, safer browsing, and a close look at how your information is stored, Cyber Liability Insurance offers the best chance for recovering if your business does fall foul to malicious online activity.

Protect your business in the meantime

These simple steps can help you bolster the security of your online systems:

  • Make sure you have up-to-date online protection software in place to help guard your system against online threats
  • Monitor the sites your employees visit to ensure they are not opening the network up to malware
  • Revisit how sensitive data is stored, and the security around your IP addresses.

Finally, talk to the team at Hine for a clearer view on how Cyber Liability can protect your business, and provide vital recuperation support when it’s most needed. Call 0161 438 0000 or email info@hine.co.uk

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