Gerry Grant, chief ethical hacker at SBRC
A voucher scheme has been launched to help small businesses and third sector organisations to combat the menace of e-crime by securing a Cyber Essentials accreditation.
Cyber Essentials, endorsed by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), is the baseline standard in cybersecurity, helping to prevent the most common attacks by implementing five basic network controls and practising good cyber hygiene.
The Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) is urging Scottish-based SMEs and third sector organisations to apply for vouchers up to £1000 to help them finance the certification, as part of a £500,000 investment by the Scottish Government.
Graham Bye, Scottish Cybersecurity Information Sharing Partnership (CiSP) and cyber essentials coordinator at SBRC, said: “All businesses and organisations, no matter how small, are a potential target, particularly if they do not take simple precautionary measures to protect themselves.
“Any company with an IT network could be at risk of an attack and computerised systems - payroll, marketing, booking systems and databases, for example, could all be compromised.
“Cyber attacks are also a real risk to the third sector; from a small, locally run playgroup which holds a database of personal details, to larger charities delivering services to vulnerable adults.
“Having a Cyber Essentials badge shows your customers and clients that you take cyber security seriously and that you can and will protect your organisation against common cyber threats.”
The SBRC-led ‘Trusted Partners’ initiative has also been established to signpost the group of independent companies in Scotland who are accredited as Cyber Essentials Certifying Bodies.
Graham added: “This initiative, endorsed by our partners at Police Scotland, was established to support other businesses across Scotland to achieve Cyber Essentials.
“The group is now seen as a respected collective voice and point of reference in the provision of Cyber Essentials in Scotland.”
Interested organisations can apply for the voucher system online via the Scottish Enterprise or Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) websites.
Gerry Grant, chief ethical hacker at SBRC said: “From undergoing the Cyber Essentials process ourselves, as a non-profit organisation, we’d strongly recommend it to any of our members.
“It encourages you to think about your own cybersecurity in a different light and flags up the potential vulnerabilities in your system.
“Cyber Essentials give you a really good grounding when it comes to your cybersecurity – and the process is not particularly difficult or onerous.”
The Scottish Business Resilience Centre exists to create a secure environment where business can trade securely, regardless of size and sector.
It works closely with partners, members and stakeholders to help make Scotland a more resilient and safer place to live and work.
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