A Million Small Businesses in The UK Lack The Cyber Skills Needed To Thrive


29 Oct 2015

A Million Small Businesses in The UK Lack The Cyber Skills Needed To Thrive

The recent TalkTalk hack has highlighted the fact that some of the UK’s biggest companies lack the skills needed to adequately protect themselves from a cyber-attack.

A report released earlier in the month by  Go.On UK, a charity set up to promote digital skills showed that the nation is suffering from a massive cyber skills shortage. The report said that over 12 million people and a million small businesses in the UK are lacking the skills needed to thrive in today’s digital era.

The area highlighted to have the lowest skill levels was Wales, where a third of the population do not possess basic IT skills. On the whole however, the rest of the UK was shown to be doing well when compared with other nations. The best performing regions are London, Scotland and East Anglia, which came top of the league with over 80% of people possessing basic skills.

The Go.On survey mainly focused upon the basic skills, but there is also a shortage in the cyber security field.

The cyber-attacks reported in the media, especially the recent TalkTalk hack shows that many organisations including big companies are still falling behind the curve when it comes to cyber security. This shortage in people with the necessary cyber security skills needed to defend an organisation is concerning after the City of London Police commissioner Adrian Leppard recently warned that cybercrime may have surpassed the drugs trade in terms of the threat it poses.

Another survey released in 2014 of cyber security employers, showed that 90% of organisations were having difficulties in filling positions. Job vacancies in the sector have risen sharply over the last year and that demand is set to rise further over the coming years.

PGI Aims To Close the Skills Gap

PGI provides cyber security services and training to clients across all sectors. PGI believes that the single most effective step a company can take against cybercrime is to educate from the top down. Security starts at the top and SMEs are no different. If a CEO is educated in cyber security then that knowledge is likely to be passed down to all employees.

PGI’s state of the art Cyber Academy based in Bristol provides a wide variety of courses which will teach an SME’s staff everything they need to know in order to better understand and tackle the threats posed by cybercriminals and hackers.

Cyber Essentials

A good place for organisations to start is to obtain the Cyber Essentials accreditation.

The Cyber Essentials Scheme has been designed to provide all businesses with a clear set of guidelines on how to mitigate the risks posed by internet based threats. By implementing the measures in the Cyber Essentials scheme, a business can greatly reduce its vulnerability to cyber threats offers a way for businesses to demonstrate to their customers and investors that they take cyber security seriously,’ said Ben Swindlehurst, Commercial Development Director at PGI Cyber.

PGI now has a Cyber Essentials portal, making it easier than ever to get the accreditation.

Don’t become a target, invest in protection and seek the advice of the professionals at PGI Cyber.

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