Lancashire businesses can get on track to beat cybercrime with this news

A program has been launched to equip SME managers to protect their businesses against cyberattacks and avoid the potentially devastating consequences of a data breach.

The 2022 Cybersecurity Breaches Survey found that 39% of UK small businesses and 30% of charities had identified at least one breach or attack in the last 12 months.

Globally, an estimated 65,000 cyberattacks are attempted against SMBs every day.

Lancaster University offers courses to help small and medium-sized businesses in the county fight cybercrime

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A recent report estimated that each cyber breach costs SMEs around £11,000, with attacks causing around 60% of small businesses to close within six months.

A consistent lesson has been the importance of staff vigilance given that the vast majority of breaches come from worker user accounts.

Offered by Lancaster University‘s Management School and School of Computing and Communications, the Cyber ​​Strategy program will enable SMEs to meet the challenges of digital attacks, including managing threats and risks and developing new methods of work, including building capacity and leadership capabilities and creating solutions through innovation.

Dr Rebecca Robinson, Business Support and Project Manager at the School of Computing and Communications, Lancaster University

Dr Rebecca Robinson from the School of Computing and Communications, said: “As a leading institution in the field of cybersecurity, Lancaster University is already synonymous with excellence in research, teaching and learning. national and international engagement as cyber emerges as the next realm of global defense strategies – enabling continued prosperity in increasingly uncertain times.

“The university has been described as a ‘pivotal’ in plans to locate the National Cyber ​​Force’s new headquarters in the nearby town of Samlesbury – estimated to be worth around £5bn to the local economy – and forms an important part of the new North West Cyber ​​Corridor.

“Along with this, we are one of the leading institutions in the country providing support to the SME community and have over 20 years of experience delivering programs in this region.

“Even if you outsource your cybersecurity management, as a senior manager you need to directly understand what the risks are and how you can minimize the attack potential, to ensure that everything that can be done is done.

“Unless you make cyber awareness and cyber security a priority, no one in your business will and that leaves your systems vulnerable.”

Lancaster University’s approach to cybersecurity is to address challenges in a holistic way that goes beyond creating technological solutions.

By bringing together experts from various academic disciplines, the institution examines the sociological, psychological, economic, political and technological aspects of cybersecurity. J

Helen Wilkinson, Knowledge Exchange Development Manager for Lancaster University Management School, said: “As a business owner or manager, you can’t afford to deal with security after the fact if you want to succeed in prevent cyberattacks.

“You need to establish a culture of vigilance and excellence around cyber protection and ensure that you have the right systems and fully trained staff to detect threats and apply good security practices at the right time.

“Our new program will transform business leaders’ understanding of cyber risks and threats, as well as solutions to mitigate attacks. It will build leadership capabilities and provide the tools to onboard teams and embed a strong culture of cyber excellence across all operations.

Leaders will be empowered to embed the resilience necessary for businesses to continue to grow and thrive. »

The program will run over a period of five months, starting November 16. It will include an initiation session, a number of hands-on workshops and masterclasses, a business sprint project, and a final action planning session in March.

Sessions will be highly interactive, featuring real-world case studies and hacking attack demos to build executives’ knowledge and awareness of the risk environment and potential challenges for businesses.

Delegates will also benefit from discussions with leading cyber and leadership experts, a toolkit of resources they can draw upon in the future as their business continues to evolve, as well as, and perhaps most importantly, peer-to-peer support from other business leaders in the region. .

Places are fully funded for eligible businesses through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

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