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68% of British firms were hit by cyber attacks in last 12 months

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May 9, 2016

According to a government-sponsored survey, it's revealed today that about 68.3 percent of large British firms were hit by a cyber breach or internet attack in the last twelve months.

The attacks on all the businesses involved viruses, spyware, ransomware or malware according to a poll of British firms carried out as part of the Cyber Security Breaches Survey.

Following the government’s occasionally controversial Cyber Essentials scheme would have prevented the security issues but a lack of adequate cyber security policies means that organizations are still getting attacked in rather large numbers.

About 9.7 percent of the companies had an incident management plan in place, even though about 24.6 percent of large businesses experiencing a security breach did so at least once a month, according to the poll.

And it’s a familiar story that many have heard and read before. In an attempt to improve the situation, the British government is making a record £1.9 billion investment in cyber security over the next five years, with a new National Cyber Security Centre due to launch in the fall of this year.

The centre will offer industry a one-stop-shop for cyber security support, it said.

Results from the report are being released alongside the government’s Cyber Governance Health Check scheme, which was launched following the TalkTalk cyber attack.

It found that about 48.7 percent of the top FTSE 350 businesses regarded cyber attacks as the biggest threat to their operations when compared with other key risks: up from 29.1 percent in 2014.

The U.K. minister for the Digital Economy Ed Vaizey said-- “The United Kingdom is a world-leading digital economy and this government has made cyber security a top priority. Too many businesses are losing money, data and consumer confidence with the vast number of cyber attacks. It’s absolutely crucial businesses are secure and can protect data. As a minimum companies should take action by adopting the Cyber Essentials scheme which will help them protect themselves.”

Source: The U.K. Minister for the Digital Economy.

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