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Cyber attacks are still one of the biggest fears for SMEs

SMEs in the UK are still concerned about cyber attacks or malware infection than cash flow, claims Sophos in its new report Securing Growth. Almost half (45%) of SME decision-makers surveyed for the report cite cyber security as a concern, putting it ahead of staffing issues (40%), regulations (27%) and cashflow (32%) in the list of problems that need addressing.

The report highlights the security challenges faced by SMEs at different stages of their growth and development, with younger companies at risk due to their flexibility and pragmatism and older companies vulnerable due to bloat and lack of oversight.

For example, almost one third of SMEs that have been trading for more than 16 years do not know what cloud services are used by their company (31%) or what public file sharing applications employees use to share information externally. In companies that have been trading for 1-5 years, these figures are 13% and 9% respectively.

Conversely, 59% of the youngest firms allow all employees to connect personal devices to the corporate network, with 44% allowing all contractors and third parties to connect to their network. In businesses that have been operating for 16 years or more, the respective figures are 33% and 6%.

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2018