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It's a cultural thing

Awareness of cyber threats is one thing, but increased security from change will only come from a cultural shift, say Simon Borwick and Lushin Premji.

A recent report by Juniper Research found that 74% of the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) believe they are safe from cyber attacks. This contrasts with half of these SMEs that have admitted to having sustained such a breach, two thirds of which occurred in the past 12 months.

Many small businesses say that their people are their greatest asset, yet often people also represent their greatest source of cyber risk. PwC’s Global State of Information Security Survey showed 51% of the worst security breaches reported stemmed from an initial human error, 28% caused by current employees. There have been a number of recent examples that have started with an employee inadvertently making a mistake resulting in widespread and high-impact consequences.

The so-called ‘human firewall’ is therefore a vital defence in every organisation’s cyber armour. This is especially significant for smaller enterprises, where significant investment in technology to reduce the impact of human error may not be feasible. With stretched margins and considerable uncertainty affecting investment  decisions, how can SMEs upgrade their human firewall to make their people the first line of defence against a cyber attack?

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