Half of UK businesses identified at least one cyber breach or attack in last 12 months

22 September 2017

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail says HMRC’s tax agent blog; so what do you need to do to prepare?

UK businesses do you think identified at least one cyber security breach or attack in the last 12 months

The recent Government Cyber Security Breaches survey showed ‎that though businesses are more aware than ever before, many must prepare.

Cyber security starts with the basics;

  • Software updates

Install the latest software and app updates; they contain vital security updates, which help protect your devices from viruses and hackers

  • Passwords

Use a strong and separate password for your email (using three random words to create a strong password); hackers can use your email to access many of your personal accounts

  • Two factor authentication

When available use two-factor authentication or two step verification for your most important accounts as an extra layer of security.

You can find more information about Cyber Security at Cyber Aware. This is a cross government website, which provides information based on expert advice from the National Cyber Security Centre, part of the Government Communications Headquarters.

You can also find information about protecting your login details and reducing the risk of fraud when using HMRC Online Services, at HMRC's online security information for agents.

Could you spot a cyber attack in your inbox?

Bacs has detailed some common signs to look out for that may help you spot if an email isn’t what it seems:

  • The “from” email address might contain spelling mistakes, or be a different address to the one you’re used to
  • The email may create a sense of urgency, pressuring you into quick action
  • The sender may be asking for information they should already know, or shouldn’t have access to. For example no legitimate organisation will ever ask for your password
  • There might be an attachment you must download. Criminals will try to infect your IT systems by pressuring or enticing you to downloading attachments
  • You may not be expecting, or would have no reason to receive, an email from the sender
  • Does something just feel off? If something doesn’t feel right about the email, it probably isn’t

If there are any points you are concerned about or if you need any further information about cyber security, Bacs recommend that you contact your organisation’s information / cyber security team or your IT team.