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News

High cost of data breaches for UK businesses

Sophos : 22 June, 2015  (Technical Article)
The way UK businesses approach security product implementation needs rethinking, according to Sophos network security expert
High cost of data breaches for UK businesses

The Centre for economic and business research (CEBR) recently released a report which found that data breaches are costing UK business £34bn a year. Chris Weeds, director for network security at Sophos has looked at how SMB’s should think about security in light of the report, and how important it is for businesses to invest more in educating their staff about cybersecurity in order to avoid falling victim to breaches.

According to Chris Weeds, businesses need to rethink the way they implement security products and measures. A new study from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) has found that data breaches are costing UK businesses £34bn a year. This is made up of £18bn alone in lost revenue and £16bn in added security measures after breaches have occurred. Sophos strongly urges businesses to think about security in a more joined-up way and to carefully consider whether layering on new solutions each time a new threat appears is the most effective way to keep your business secure.

Despite over 95% of UK businesses falling into the Small to Medium size (SMB) category, almost all security solutions are designed for large enterprises and as a result are often too complex for the resource-strapped SMB to use effectively. All too often SMBs are left with multiple products that all work separately to defeat separate elements of the threat, and which they don’t have the time or expertise to properly manage. The result is less effective security and many decision makers questioning the return on investment and putting IT managers and their budgets under scrutiny.

Instead, SMBs would do better to look for security solutions that evolve by integrating new protection technologies into their existing security solution, joining up different points of protection. In order to stop complex threats you increasingly require security products that can work effectively together to protect the enduser and corporate data, across all points of the network. Ultimately a more joined-up approach will reduce costs and improve security at the same time, simply by requiring fewer products to bought and maintained.

However, as well as having the right products in place, for security solutions to be truly effective they need to be coupled with employee education. This means helping the workforce understand the simple steps they can take to help secure themselves and the business where they work. We, as leaders in the security industry, have a role to play too, by dealing with the growing complexity of threats without introducing more complex solutions. Ultimately this makes it easier for businesses to stay secure. If businesses invest a little more in the education of their staff and look for products that work better together, then we might see more businesses reducing the risk to their business and avoiding some of the costs of a breach outlined in the report.

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