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Two out of five small businesses victims of a serious cyber incident

Ahead of today’s Safer Internet Day, cyber security firm Cynch Security has released its Big cyber security questions for small businesses white paper that highlights the security challenges that Australian small-business owners face as so many of them transition to operating online.

Of concern is the fact that the research behind the white paper found that two in five small businesses have direct experience with a cyber incident worthy of reporting, while less than 15 per cent have paid for outside cybersecurity help in the past year.

The report also reveals that while 72 per cent of small businesses consider cybersecurity as very important (compared to 50 per cent who rate physical security the same), 19 per cent of small businesses did not spend a dollar on cybersecurity over the past 12 months, despite the fact that cyber security incidents are being reported to every 10 minutes

The data has been gathered by Cynch, Deakin University and RMIT University, with additional support from AustCyber through the AustCyber Projects Fund.

Susie Jones, co-founder and CEO of Cynch Security, highlighted the fact that the research has found 84 per cent of Australian small businesses have adopted online services and rely on up to 30 separate technologies, which by itself introduces new risks that need to be actively managed.

“The small-business owners we spoke to said they know that computer systems are inherently vulnerable, and will accept ownership of any related risks but they have difficulty finding the time, available budget, appropriate support staff, and the knowledge about what could be done to manage cyber risk,” Jones said.

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